Jose Mourinho has expressed his disappointment at seeing Andreas Pereira join Valencia on loan this season, noting the Brazilian would have received chances at Manchester United over the next nine months.
The Portuguese initially made attempts to block any loan move for Pereira after the midfielder impressed on loan at Granada in La Liga last season.
But the 21-year-old eventually completed a move to the Spanish side and later explained that his decision was grounded in a desire to optimise minutes on the pitch.
Mourinho, however, noted at a press conference ahead of the clash with Stoke that he disagreed with Pereira’s reluctance to fight for his place at Old Trafford this season, whilst also confirming that the club had inserted a clause in his loan contract that enables the club to recall him in January.
“Andreas Pereira was a personal decision that I don’t agree with,” he said. “A decision I don’t think honestly I don’t think is the best decision for him, a decision that disappoints me, because I think he has the potential to be here fighting for a position, for opportunities, and fighting to be a Manchester United player.
“I think his decision can be considered a young player who wants to play every weekend but can also be considered a decision by a young player that is not ready to fight for something difficult and it’s difficult to play in the Manchester United midfield.
“You have to be ready to fight for the position and I am a bit disappointed he left. But it was his decision, I open the door for his decision, he has a long-term contract, we have the option to bring him back on January 1, so we have that situation under control. It is not a drama but is a decision which disappoints me a little bit.”
The 54-year-old clearly wanted to keep Pereira as a squad player this season. With United fighting on four fronts this season and about to enter a September period comprising of seven games in 22 days, Pereira would have received minutes. You can tell Mourinho had planned for this season with the belief that the Brazilian would be here.
At the same time, however, you have to praise any player who chooses to prioritise his development on the pitch despite being well positioned at a big club. Pereira’s main concern, above anything, is improving as much as possible this season.