Andreas Pereira has revealed that his motivation to become a better player was the simple reason he decided to move to Valencia on loan from Manchester United last summer.
Pereira is one of United's brightest young talents, and many had hoped he would have stayed at Old Trafford this season to fight it out for a place in the starting line up.
That was also the wish of manager Jose Mourinho, and it was Periera who went against the Portuguese's wishes to seal a temporary move to Spain.
He told the Mail: "It was difficult because he told me I had to stay and I wanted to play and get more minutes. I never want to leave United but I want to play as well. In the end it will make me a better player and I will be that better player at United.
"I wanted to go somewhere and play a regular season. Last year I did it and I felt stronger for it. The United staff recognised it [in pre-season]."
Pereira now finds himself on the brink of playing in arguably the biggest match of his fledgeling career so far - the first leg of a semi-final against the mighty Barcelona in the Copa del Rey. It is a huge chance for the 22-year-old to impress, something which he has done continuously in La Liga this season.
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Despite his boldness in standing up to Mourinho, Pereira says the pair still have a solid and respectful relationship. He added: "Sometimes I send him a message before an important game wishing him good luck and he sends me one too so we still keep in touch.''