Antony has been pictured in his first training session with Manchester United after realizing his dream move. The 22-year-old Brazilian winger joined Manchester United from Ajax for a record £85.5m.
Antony did not mince words in an interview with football transfer expert Fabrizio Romano. The emotions in the comments and responses to Fabrizio Romano were noticeable as the youngster crooned out his resolve to join Premier League giants Manchester United. He has been pictured in his first training session with Manchester United.
Brimming with optimism; smiles breaking through his cheeks, he hopped alongside other Brazilians in the Manchester United squad – Fred and another new arrival, Casemiro. It is indeed a dream come true for the youngster.
The £84.5m signing had to drag it with the management of Ajax to realize this deal. Pundits opined that Man United’s £84.5m third bid for Antony was a ‘tempting offer’ that was too good to be ignored by the Dutch champions. Without disputing this, the Man United Ajax deal agreement would not equally have gone through if Antony mounted little or no pressure for an exit.
Recall that Alred Schreuder, Ajax manager, was not mincing words when he made it clear that the youngster is not for sale. Manchester United have submitted two previous bids for the Ajax talisman winger but was rejected. A third valued at over €90m was equally rejected.
Meanwhile, after Sébastien Haller joined Dortmund, the club lost out on a possible Hakim Ziyech loan deal; hence, the club reasserted their stand on Antony that he was not leaving the club.
Alfred Schreuder had lamented the trend of how money has dominated the game, a subtle allusion to Manchester United’s increased pressure with bids to sign the Brazilian despite multiple rejections.
Nothing could be more accurate in Antony’s situation in the build-up to his transfer than the fact that Ajax were not ready to part way with one of their most prized asset.
Antony Revolts As Ajax Number Of Rejected Bids Mount
Ajax’s opposition to the deal met Antony’s revolt as the transfer window nears its end. Already, reports were flying around that his agent was in Manchester to put the finishing touches to the deal, and he was also scouting for a residence in the City. In a live interview with Fabrizio Romano, Antony said he wants to join Manchester United.
Although he still had a contract with Ajax, a clause to the contract made provisions for departure if there were considerable offers. He argued that Manchester United’s offer is enough to strike a deal. In a blunt remark, a seemingly frustrated Antony made it clear that ‘he is not asking Ajax to let him go, but he is asking Ajax to sell him.’
Man United Reach Agreement With Ajax For Antony
After a dragging negotiation process, Manchester United and Ajax finally reached an agreement for the transfer of Antony to the Old Trafford club. It took the Red Devils a 4th bid of €100m and Antony’s effort to wear down Ajax’s belligerent position. They finally gave in to the deal and allowed the youngster to leave.
Antony is the second Ajax player to arrive at the Old Trafford club after coach Erik ten Hag signed Lisandro Martinez for £56.7m. He was the fourth United signing this summer after Tyrell Malacia, Christian Eriksen, and Casemiro.
Speaking at his unveiling by the club, Antony has not hidden his joy of reuniting with his former manager, under whose tutelage he rose to stardom. He had also spoken of his boundless sense of accomplishment being a Manchester United player.
He mentioned how rough and rocky the journey had been, the firm belief of his family members about him, and his joy of coming to Manchester United.
‘I went through many difficult moments in my life,’ he told United’s website.
‘I know that this will be another challenge. I went through a lot in the past – no football boots, nothing to eat, three or four in the morning bailing water out of my house as it had flooded.
‘They were very difficult times but I went through it all with a smile. Those moments have contributed to everything I’m now experiencing.’
Antony had a reason to smile in his Manchester United first training session, given the tweaks and shots which nearly toppled the deal.
Manchester United will play Arsenal in their next Premier League fixture. Antony may likely make his debut for the club as Ten Hag plans on forwarding a solid lineup for the match on Sunday, September 4.