Home » Robin Van Persie played a crucial role behind Tyrell Malacia’s decision to join Manchester United

Robin Van Persie played a crucial role behind Tyrell Malacia’s decision to join Manchester United

Apart from RVP, Ten Hag and Chong also spoke and convinced the full-back to come to Manchester

by Ayantan Chowdhury

The first signing of the Erik ten Hag era is almost upon us. Feyenoord left-back Tyrell Malacia has completed his medicals and the only thing left for him to be officially announced as a Red Devil is his signature.

The 22-year-old revealed in an interview with De Telegraaf how former United star Robin Van Persie was key in his decision to move to Manchester.

At one point, it seemed like the talented youngster would be moving to France and sign for Olympique Lyonnais. However, United hijacked the deal at the last moment and things moved quickly afterwards with the player’s eagerness to move to England the deal-maker.

And according to the Dutch international, he always dreamed of strutting his stuff at the Theatre of Dreams having seen his idol Van Persie represent the 20-time league champions.

“I always followed Manchester United because Robin van Persie played there. That’s why I got an extra feeling with that. I’ve talked to him about the club and the city. About residential areas.”

“One of the biggest clubs in the world with a fantastic stadium and a wonderful history and of course with many top players who have played there.”

Van Persie was offered the chance to join as part of Ten Hag’s coaching staff but he turned down the opportunity.

The left-back has played at Old Trafford before, during a youth tournament with Feyenoord. And from that time onwards, he had the desire to come back and wear the famous red shirt.

“We played a youth tournament at United and I said: ‘I will come back here someday. That has now come true and that is of course wonderful!”

The role of Ten Hag & an unlikely source

The Rotterdam-born full-back is aware that the hard work is just starting and the move to the English giants represents a massive step up in his career. The scrutiny is going to be non-stop and the expectations are sky-high.

“I’m proud but also very grateful that I get this opportunity. This is not for everyone and I understand that the work at an even higher level is only just beginning. Getting better every day and showing that you can measure up at this level.

“I have worked hard all my career and this is a reward for that, for me and for all the people who have always supported me and believed in me,” Malacia added.

The decisive factor behind the move was Ten Hag’s phone call to the highly-rated defender. And the first signing of the transfer window revealed that he was hopeful of a long and fruitful stint and that he admired his new manager’s ability to improve players.

“Mr Ten Hag is a very good trainer and also a warm person, so I had a good conversation with him and I have a very good feeling about him,” Malacia revealed.

“That is important because if all goes well, we will work together for years. I’m looking forward to that because I think I can learn a lot from him, he makes players who want to work hard better.”

Apart from RVP and Ten Hag, the Europa Conference League runner-up also had a word with another United academy graduate Tahith Chong. Both of them know each other from their time at Feyenoord.

“I also heard a lot through my childhood friend Tahith Chong, with whom I played at Feyenoord,” he added.

United currently have four senior options at left-back with young Alvaro Fernandez waiting in the wings. This move might signal the end of Alex Telles‘ short United career and might force Brandon Williams to look elsewhere in search of regular football.

Hopefully, Luke Shaw and Malacia can push each other to greater heights in the seasons to come.

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