Manchester United full-back Tyrell Malacia has opened up on the warning he received from Erik ten Hag following Antony's move to Old Trafford this summer.
Malacia and Antony knew each other well before the pair became teammates in Manchester. The pair found themselves on either side of the fierce Feyenoord versus Ajax rivalry in the Eredivisie.
The left-back grew up in Zuid, a suburb of Rotterdam, where fights between players was common. In an interview with The Mirror, Malacia has now explained that the ferocity he grew up with led to the warning from Ten Hag.
"I know I am not the tallest player in football, but people forget I am from Zuid," he explained. "In Zuid, we take care of our own business and fight our own battles.
"Ten Hag recognised that. When it was clear that Antony’s transfer to United was on and he was expected to come into the squad, the gaffer spoke to me about him.
"It was just before Antony’s first training session at United. He said: ‘Please go easy on him, no more rough stuff.'
"On the streets of Zuid, I played many football games that ended in fights. But that was the way it was. Playing on the streets of Rotterdam, at the De Kuip Stadium or Old Trafford, I just love a battle."
Despite already being made of strong stuff, Malacia added that he continues to build up his physical strength with personal trainer Jordan Kroon. "Jordan still sends me schedules every week and I follow them all," he added.
"If I want to be a winner in the Premier League, that’s what I have to do. In the first few months at United I have discovered that there is not a single game here, where you can play at just 60 percent of your potential.
"That was possible in Holland in some games. Not here.
"In England, I play two finals every week. That’s the way I approach it compared to the way I used to play before.
"This really is another level — but this is all I ever wanted. I was ready for it."