Manchester United: Antony says he will not change his ways
Manchester United signed Antony from Ajax in the summer for an initial fee of £81.3m
Manchester United winger Antony says he’s “not going to stop doing what got me where I am” after his showboating criticism in the Europa League.
Antony produced a 720-degree spin with the ball stuck to his left foot in Thursday’s win over Sheriff Tiraspol.
Boss Erik ten Hag said afterwards he will “correct” the Brazilian if the player is unnecessarily showboating.
“We’re known for our art and I’m not going to stop doing what got me where I am,” wrote Antony on Instagram.
The message was posted by the 22-year-old on Friday.
After Antony’s spin, his next move was to knock the ball straight out for a Sheriff goal-kick.
Ten Hag denied it was the reason he substituted the £85m winger at half-time.
“I don’t have a problem with tricks as long as it’s functional,” said the Dutchman, who also managed Antony at Ajax.
“I demand more from him – more runs behind, more often in the box and more playing in the pocket.
“When there is a trick like that, it’s nice as long as it’s functional. If you’re not losing the ball, then it’s OK – but if it’s a trick because of a trick, then I will correct him.”
Antony was backed by fellow Brazilian and PSG star Neymar, who posted on social media: ‘Keep it up, don’t change anything! Go for it boy! Boldness and joy”. And Antony’s Brazil and Manchester United team-mate Fred told ESPN: “I think it starts with us being Brazilians. Brazilians have quality in their blood. It’s always been that way since Pele, to have quality, to dribble, to score, to dance, to smile. So I think people have to understand this aspect that we have.
“Dribbling, doing what he likes to do because he has the quality for it, so he has to keep doing it. Casemiro and I don’t have the quality for that, so we can’t do it.
“I think those who have quality have to show it on the pitch there. If you want to control differently, you can control. You want to do a spin that he likes to do, you have to do it. Dance, you can dance. As long as it’s with respect to the opponent, obviously.”