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“I Think I Can Play Many Many Years At Manchester United”: Ace Outlines Desire To ‘Build History’ At Club

Diogo Dalot joined Man Utd from Porto last summer.
Diogo Dalot joined Man Utd from Porto last summer.

Out of the players who arrived at Manchester United from Jose Mourinho’s meagre summer spending spree, the only one so far to get the Red Devils fan base truly excited is defender Diogo Dalot.

The Portuguese was signed for £19 million in the 2018 off-season after making a single first-team appearance for Primera Liga champions Porto.

Just marginally born on the other side of the millennium, Dalot offers the prospect of a solid right-back option for years to come, after supporters have been used to watching converted wingers Antonio Valencia and Ashley Young filling in the hole in recent seasons.

And it seems the 19-year-old, born in the year The World Is Not Enough was released, is reciprocally looking forward to a long and prosperous future with the 13-time Premier League champions.

"This year was a learning year for me, and I will keep learning more until the end of the season. [I've learned] more mentally to be ready for this kind of situation, to get an injury, to not play, to start getting fit again. For me, to learn that was a big achievement, and I think I am doing pretty well.

Dalot said in conversation with SkySports.

"I'm enjoying it. I came to this club and knew it would be difficult for me, I have good players in my position and I can learn a lot from them. I think I can have the opportunity to play many, many years here."

Under new manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Dalot has started three times since mid-December, and played the full 90 minutes twice. He has also been part of the match-day squad a further seven times, given how understandable it is to ease him into the squad.

Dalot - like most United players since Mourinho’s departure - was also provided the opportunity to ponder on what has been the difference between his compatriot and OGS taking charge of proceedings;

The biggest difference was the atmosphere we had inside the locker room. I think the tactical parts too, the game we are playing, we play more to the forward part, so I think we changed a couple things and hopefully we can still change a little bit more because we are not perfect.

It wasn't wrong, but I think when you change coach there is something which changes for itself, it's not something about the coach, something [you think]: 'We changed the manager, OK, now we need to change ourselves, too.' I think we changed for better, when we get the results we've got.

Mourinho however, was the one to bring him to Old Trafford in the first place and spoke gushingly about the right-back, producing the audacious claim that he could be the next Gary Neville, who occupied the same position;

"[The comparison] brings responsibility, but I wouldn't accept it if I couldn't be at the top, and for me it's a pleasure being compared to those types of players,"

Dalot said.

"They are words of Mourinho, I need to build my own history here and that's to always keep improving, and hopefully I can be here for many years to play for United."

Dalot will likely feature in the Manchester United matchday squad to face Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park, which kicks off at 20:00 (GMT) on Wednesday 27th February.

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