According to reports, Man Utd attacker Antony “squared up to someone” at Ajax during the summer as he was “desperate” to join the Premier League club.
Antony was one of United’s main targets during the summer transfer window. They were also linked with Cody Gakpo but they prioritised the former Ajax man even though a move for him was more expensive.
A deal for Antony looked unlikely at one stage as Ajax were holding out for around £85m. But he was insistent that he wanted to join Man Utd and he even handed in a transfer request to get the transfer over the line.
The Brazil international has struggled at times this season but he has shown flashes of promise. He has grabbed six goals and one assist in 26 outings for the Red Devils.
United did some great business during the summer transfer window as they also brought in the likes of Casemiro, Lisandro Martinez, Christian Eriksen and Tyrell Malacia.
ESPN journalist Rob Dawson has now spoken out on United’s summer transfers. He has revealed that Antony “was desperate” to join Man Utd, while Casemiro and Martinez pushed for their moves in different ways.
“We brought these players in because they bring all that stuff off the field,” Dawson told The United Stand.
“You speak to people like John Murtough and people in his recruitment department and he will tell you that himself, it’s not just about the football players.
“They love the fact that Lisandro Martinez walked into a room at Ajax and said ‘I’m going to Man United.’ And they were like ‘no, you’re not’, and he was like ‘yeah I am, see you later. I want to play for Man United, I’m going.’
“They love the fact that Casemiro, even after Brentford, rang up and said ‘I’m still coming. It’s alright, I’ll fix this – I’m still coming.’
“They love the fact that Antony squared up to someone at Ajax and said ‘You’ve got to let me go. I’m desperate to go, I’m desperate to play for Man United.’
“That is the kind of spirit and desire that they want from these new signings and you can see it all over the pitch, and that’s exactly what Erik ten Hag has done.”
Ten Hag has admitted that there is “space for improvement” with Antony.
“I think he is not losing games. When he is playing and the team is winning and that already gives a message of how well he is performing.
“He can do better, I see space for improvement and, for instance – and I think you notice – we want him to be more direct, more involved. But the team is performing better if he is on the pitch and that is a good thing, a good base to build further on.
“I think he already makes improvement, he scored some goals, he scored in his first three games, now he scores against Everton and Charlton, so he has an impact.
“But I think with his capabilities, with his talents he can do even more. He has a good contribution in the team.”
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