Nani has claimed that signing a new contract with Manchester United was the worst moment of his life.
The Portuguese International signed for United from Sporting Lisbon, and enjoyed a trophy-laden seven-year spell with the club, winning four Premier League titles, two league cups and the Champions League. He was also named United’s player’s player of the year in 2011.
In 2013, David Moyes offered Nani a five-year contract, which he signed with the belief that he would be assured a place in United’s first team.
However, things didn’t go according to plan, as Moyes got sacked, and Van Gaal was appointed as the new manager the following season. The Dutchman reportedly wanted the winger to stay, but could not guarantee him a place in the starting XI.
This led to Nani leaving the club on loan to former club Sporting Lisbon, and then on a permanent basis to Turkish club Fenerbache in 2015.
“It could have been the best moment of my life but it turned into the worst,” Nani, who was part of the Portugal team that won Euro 2016 earlier this summer, told The Guardian.
“After you sign a contract like that, you think all the people will be behind you and help you. And you see the opposite.
“Then the stress comes. I was down and, when it’s like that, of course, the injuries come too. It was a bad moment. It was something that made me very down, very disappointed.
“He [Van Gaal] told me that, if I wanted to stay to fight for a position, then good, but I would not be his first option or maybe even the second,” Nani added.
“I said: ‘No. I have been here for many years, I have been very important to this club and I think it’s time to decide.’ I wanted to play every game in the starting XI.”
Nani is now at Valencia. after completing a move to the La Liga club earlier this summer for a reported fee of £7.2 million.