'I didn't feel love from Man Utd' - Herrera admits difference of opinion with Woodward led to Old Trafford exit

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The Paris Saint-Germain midfielder says it was never his "intention" to leave the Red Devils but the club were unwilling to offer him a long-term deal

Ander Herrera has admitted that a difference of opinion with Manchester United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward led to his Old Trafford exit last year.

United signed Herrera for €36 million (£33m/$42m) from Athletic Club in the summer of 2014, and the Spaniard went onto make 189 appearances for the Red Devils, scoring 20 goals, while also getting his hands on the FA Cup, League Cup and Europa League.

Herrera quickly established himself as a fan favourite with his combative performances in the middle of the park, and won the club's in-house Player of the Year award in 2016-17.

He was a firm favourite during Jose Mourinho's reign and managed to retain a place in the starting line-up when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer replaced the Portuguese in December 2018, but he left Manchester as a free agent the following summer.

The 31-year-old, who was subsequently snapped up on a five-year contract by Paris Saint-Germain, has now revealed that United were only willing to offer him a one-season extension, which he didn't feel reflected his overall contribution over the course of his five years at the club.

Ahead of a meeting with his former employers in a Champions League group stage opener at Parc des Princes on Tuesday, Herrera has explained why he reluctantly walked away from United after a disagreement with Woodward and the rest of the board.

“My intention was not to leave the club and I was happy there - as happy as I am now here,” the PSG midfielder told The Telegraph.

“It was not a secret. I was negotiating for more than one year but I expected more from the board after my third season at the club when I was player of the year.

“They didn’t come to me that summer; they didn’t even call me. And that was very painful for me because I had a feeling that I was giving everything.

“In saying that I have a huge respect for Ed Woodward, a huge respect for the board. They have always treated me fantastically.

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“I know they want the best for Manchester United but in football, in life and in every company in the world sometimes you don’t think the same way and I respect that.

“If I see Ed I will give him a hug. We just had different opinions about Manchester United and, in my opinion, what the club should have done.

“I want to make sure everyone understands there is nothing personal at all. That’s life. But it’s true – after the third season when I was player of the year, when I had the respect and the love from the fans, I didn’t feel that love from the club.”

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