The Argentina international forward flopped in England on the back of a big-money move that saw him handed an iconic jersey
Angel Di Maria says he “didn’t give a f*ck about the Manchester United No 7” after being handed the jersey at Old Trafford in 2014 and claims Louis van Gaal is the main reason for his failure in English football.
The Argentina international forward generated plenty of excitement when making his £59.7 million ($82m) move from Real Madrid.
However he flopped badly – leaving for Paris Saint-Germain a year later with just 32 appearances and four goals to his name – and a man who had an iconic shirt thrust upon him says the experienced Dutch coach was responsible for his inability to emulate the efforts of fellow No.7s such as Eric Cantona, David Beckham and Cristiano Ronaldo.
What has been said?
Di Maria told TyC Sports: “I didn’t give a f*ck about the Manchester United No. 7, at first they talked to me a lot about it, it was just a shirt.
“My problem at Manchester was the coach. Van Gaal was the worst of my career. I would score, assist, and the next day he would show me my misplaced passes. He displaced me from one day to the other, he didn’t like players being more than him.”
Who did Di Maria thrive under?
While Van Gaal was never right for Di Maria, the South American did enjoy considerable success under Jose Mourinho at Real Madrid.
He was taken to Santiago Bernabeu by Mourinho in 2010 and hit 26 goals under the Portuguese coach as the Blancos won La Liga and Copa del Rey glory.
Di Maria said: “Mourinho is insane, with me he was always a good guy. He fought with anyone though, he didn’t give a f*ck. One time he fought with [Cristiano] Ronaldo telling him he didn’t run, that everyone ran for him.”
Di Maria is now into his seventh season at PSG – with 266 appearances for the Ligue 1 giants – and is looking to chase down more major honours under the guidance of fellow countryman Mauricio Pochettino, with Lionel Messi drafted in alongside him.