Andreas Pereira is certainly enjoying his football whilst playing on loan in La Liga this season.
Loaned by Manchester United to Granada, the Brazilian midfielder has been impressive during his spell in Spain despite the Andalusia side struggling.
Playing as a number ten, the 21-year-old has been responsible for creating most of the club’s attacking plays as they fight against relegation.
Pereira’s stats – four goals and one assist – may not impress, but it’s not difficult to see the skills and personality he’s been using to help gain control of midfield.
“I think it was very good for me to come here to be able to play regularly,” Pereira tells Sport Witness. “Here I could do this and for me it was very important. The team is not in a good situation, but we’re working hard to get out of it.”
Pereira was loaned at the start of the season, right after the arrival of José Mourinho at Manchester United. That was definitely a decision to give him more playing time, as despite being kept in the squad under Louis van Gaal in 2015/16, the youngster only managed to make 11 appearances.
“Yeah, we’re always talking,” says Pereira about the Portuguese boss. “He’s been following me and I’m happy for that.”
But the manager still hasn’t told his player the position where he could be used next season: “No, it still wasn’t talked about. At the end of the loan, when I get back to Manchester, then we’ll see what happens. For now, I’m focused here and trying to help my team.”
Since making his debut for the club, Pereira has played for United in basically every midfield position so far, and he’s not worried about where he may fit in under Mourinho.
“Actually, if I have to play for Manchester United, I want to play wherever the manager thinks I should play. I can play in many positions and that’s something good.”
Despite being born in Belgium, Pereira is the son of a former Brazilian football player. That’s why he speaks Portuguese and has already represented the country at U20 and U23 level.
Having moved to Manchester United in 2012, at the age of just 16, Pereira has a lot of friends at the club. He recently posted a video on Instagram of a meet-up with his close friend Joel Pereira, who had also been sent out on loan at the start of the season.
“I lived with Joel since I arrived in Manchester. He’s a big friend I was very happy at seeing him again. I keep contact with several players, such as Romero, Rojo and others.”
Pereira’s loan at Granada has turned out well for him. First team football has been great for his confidence and development, and that’s what the player takes from this spell: “It’s important to play, and after a season of course I would have more experience. Certainly I’ve learned how to defend better here.”
Although the player’s contract expires next year, he’s revealed that the talks for a renewal are “not yet” started. But with the football he’s been showing in Spain, Manchester United will likely deal with this soon.