Andreas Pereira believes defying Jose Mourinho’s orders and heading for La Liga last season has benefited him hugely.
The 22-year-old started in the Premier League win over Leicester last week – his first ever start for United – and he impressed in a holding role alongside big-money buys Paul Pogba and Fred.
And Pereira believes that playing in Spain for the last two years – firstly with Granada and then with Valencia – has helped him develop both as a person and a player.
But the Manchester United youth graduate has confirmed that his decision to leave on loan for Valencia last season was not one that Mourinho agreed with.
“I learned a lot of things being on my own, I lived on my own there, and it’s different than living over here,” Pereira told Sky Sports.
“I’m more professional now, I know what my body needs every day, I’m more mature now than I was two years ago. They’ve been really good for me, I think I’ve totally changed as a player and a human being after these two years.”
Pereira decided against staying at Old Tarfford last season as he believed his game time would have been severely limited.
“It was very difficult for me to take that decision. Mourinho is one of the best coaches in the world, and he tells you to stay, and if you go against it you’ve only got things to lose in your head really.
“I was nervous about that, but it came out well. We had a great year in Valencia, and I am a better player, and this season he has a better Andreas than he could have had last year.
“He hasn’t told me [that I have improved], but I think he will see this in games. I have a very good relationship with him, he is very good with me, very honest,” added Pereira.