Di Maria Opens Up About His ‘Difficult’ Return To Old Trafford

Paris Saint-Germain's Angel Di Maria celebrates scoring their first goal.

Reuters / Christian Hartmann

Angel Di Maria enjoyed a memorable return to Old Trafford on Tuesday night, as his Paris Saint-Germain side thrashed Manchester United 2-0 in the first leg of their Champions League round of 16 encounter.

The Argentine international was the creator of both the goals that were scored on the night, with his overall performance playing a major role in ending the Red Devils’ 11-match unbeaten streak under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

The former United number 7 was greeted with hostility from the home crowd right from the get-go, with his each and every touch booed tremendously by the Mancunian supporters.

During his post-match interview, Di Maria admitted that he had expected as much, as he told Cadena Cope radio, per ESPN: “It was difficult from the opening minute but I knew this was going to happen.

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“But I’ve said it in the past and I reiterate it, I never spoke badly of the people here and of this club. These are things that happen and people took it badly. I only had problems with the coach [Louis van Gaal] here.”

His current coach Thomas Tuchel, however, had nothing but praise for the forward, as the German stated (via Goal.com): “I thought he had a good relationship with the fans. He was a bit nervous and needed to be calmer in the first-half. In the end, he did well.

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“I’m happy that he stayed confident. I’m happy that he stayed always like this, super reliable because he’s always working hard. He always gives his best and for that, it’s easy to forgive him when he has not such a good first half, for us.

“I’m very happy. It’s always dangerous with him, with corners, and of course a superb assist for the second goal in the open position and with a perfect pass for Kylian. So, a nice comeback for him and I’m very happy for him, and of course he helped us a lot.”