Antony

Antony has vowed to continue doing his skills and tricks for Manchester United fans, despite intense criticism from pundit Gary Neville.

On his club debut after an £85m move from Ajax, the 22-year-old stood in front of Arsenal’s Oleksandr Zinchenko and tried to confuse the Ukrainian by lifting his leg up and twirling it around before playing the ball back.

Neville said the Brazilian would have ‘whacked’ for his ‘pointless’ piece of first-half skill if he had anything to do with it, as previously reported in Sportsmail.

Fellow pundit Jamie Carragher said he would have ‘put him in the stand’ if Antony had tried anything like that against him in his playing days.

The Brazilian, who scored the opening goal in United’s 3-1 win that day, and has pledged not to stop playing skilful football despite the complaints.

Antony told the Manchester United website: ‘I’ve always done this. Not just here but for all the teams I’ve played for.

‘I’ve been doing it ever since I was a child. I’ve always done it – it’s one of my characteristics.

‘I am adapting and getting used to things here already. Entertaining is something I’ve always liked and I’ll continue doing it.’

Antony was a late addition to the Manchester United squad, while 37-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo is still at Old Trafford despite consistent rumours this summer about his departure.

The 22-year-old was replaced by the Portuguese megastar after 58 minutes of his debut against Arsenal, and the Brazilian is pleased to take this opportunity to learn from the man 15 years his senior.

‘I’ve come to help my team-mates. Regardless of age, there’s immense talent in all the players,’ Antony said.

‘Words can’t describe Cristiano, the best in the world. In just a few days, I’ve learnt a lot from him. He has an extraordinary mind and, whenever I talk to him, I take a lot from it.

‘I’m sure that we have a strong attack and it’s very promising for the future.’

Manchester United’s European campaign got off to a rocky start with a 1-0 loss against Real Sociedad, but owing to Premier League cancellations, they next have the opportunity to redeem themselves at Sheriff Tiraspol in Moldova.

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