Andreas Pereira says he was convinced he had to leave Manchester United that he snubbed discussions with Erik ten Hag over fears he would convince him to stay.
Pereira finally ended his 11-year stay at the club last summer, moving to Fulham in a deal worth £10million.
The Brazilian midfielder joined United’s academy at the age of 16 and went on to play 75 games for the club’s first-team.
But Pereira was never a mainstay in the Red Devils side and had four loan spells away from the club before deciding to leave last summer.
His decision to leave came despite the arrival Ten Hag, who was one of his coaches at PSV. The ex-Ajax manager was keen to take a closer look at him during the club’s pre-season tour but the decision was taken out of his hands.
‘I didn’t speak with Ten Hag,’ Pereira told ESPN. ‘I know him because I worked with him at PSV but I was determined in my head and maybe if I spoke with the manager again I would stay.
‘In my head I was thinking “I need to go, I need to feel confident and play” and that’s what I did.
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‘At United I had a lot of memories; good memories, bad memories. It’s been 10 years at the club. I arrived when I was 16 so, you know, a young boy. It was an amazing ride but I got to the stage where I thought maybe it was best not to stay.
‘I wanted to feel more loved and I wanted to play every game. What Fulham offered me and what [manager] Marco [Silva] offered me, it was the perfect opportunity.’
‘I’m feeling at home here and it’s been great so far,’ Pereira added. ‘When I first came here they told me that every year in the Premier League they would go down.
‘The main objective was to stay in the Premier League but I spoke with the manager and he told me what he wanted to achieve and the way he wanted to play.
‘He was very ambitious and I really liked that. When we were five games into the season we realised we could do something great with the team and it’s been amazing.
‘He’s very, very strong and he’s a great guy. I’ve been enjoying my football so it’s been amazing.’