Morgan Schneiderlin has spoken out about his time at Manchester United, claiming he felt like a spectator after being left out on the sidelines.
The midfielder left Old Trafford for Everton in the January transfer window as Ronald Koeman splashed out £24m on his services.
He played a role under Louis van Gaal last year but wasn’t able to establish himself as a first-team player under Jose Mourinho, falling further down the pecking order once the Portuguese boss took over.
Speaking about his time at Old Trafford, Schneiderlin insists it was hard to pretend he was happy being left out.
“It was different at Manchester United,” he told The Times. “My routine would be the same as yours.
“I was used to playing football and then I was waking up as a spectator.
“I will be honest, there was one point in December when I did not go to matches anymore because it was hard.
“It was painful. I couldn’t go there, smile, and sign autographs for fans and pretend to be happy when I was not.
“For me, it was better to watch the game at home.
“I remember the best thing ever was after Stoke when I had made my Everton (full) debut.
“You walk and your calves are heavy, your quads are heavy and you feel like you need to go to an ice bath. That is the best feeling ever.”
“I know with my quality I could play week in week out for this team (United). Even now when I look at Manchester I think I can play. But I have no regrets because I am in a great club.
“With Mourinho, it was just a choice of him not playing me. He just wanted different players.”
It’s a shame because he was undoubtedly talented, as we’ve seen from his performances at Everton this season, but it just didn’t work out for him with Mourinho.
Hopes are he can continue to build on his career with Everton as he deserves to be playing regular first-team football under Koeman.