Left-back Tyrell Malacia says he was only ever going to move to one club when he learned of Manchester United's interest in him.
The defender had been in negotiations with Lyon over a potential Feyenoord exit before Erik ten Hag swooped in. He became the manager’s first signing as United boss.
Malacia has since replaced Luke Shaw in the United line-up and has become one of the club’s star players this season. Memorable outings in the wins over Liverpool and Arsenal have endeared him to the fans.
The 23-year-old has detailed how his next career move became obvious when United first made contact. ”I didn’t speak to coach Peter Bosz [Lyon manager] after that,” he told Algemeen Dagblad (via Sport Witness).
“I always dreamed of the Premier League. When Manchester United came, I knew where I wanted to go. It happened the way it did.”
Malacia said he realised that some onlookers may have forecasted him to only play a bit-part role at United, but was confident in his own ability so didn’t move with the intention of sitting on the bench.
He continued: ”'That will be the bench for him', I heard people say. But I’ve always said I believe in my chances. And that I have already experienced enough to be able to fight for a starting place.
“Of course, it’s not as if it was all easy at Feyenoord. Ups and downs with wonderful moments, but also with big disappointments. With serious injuries. All those things have shaped me.”
Malacia joined United on the back of their worst-ever Premier League season. However, he said that he knew the task before him at Old Trafford when he said yes to a move.
He added: “I know how to deal with setbacks. And I know I will be there - also, at Manchester United. In England, I was by no means considered the biggest buy. I knew that too. But if you perform, you don’t hear anyone about it anymore.”