Former Manchester United fullback Rafael Da Silva has given an interview to ESPN Brasil this week.

The chat started with Lyon’s Champions League game against Manchester City. With the French side winning the first match, the player explained beating his former city rivals was special.

“I celebrated because it was a very important victory in the first game of Champions League. It’s always important to start a tournament well,” Rafael told ESPN Brasil. “It’s City, I was an United player and started young there. I consider myself a child of there because I was born at Manchester and I owe almost everything to United and Fluminense as well. My professional career started there and it was great to win.”

He’s also explained that some of his former Manchester United teammates sent texts to him after the win.

“They congratulated me for the win. We have a Whatsapp group and they sent messages. Fletcher sent me a message on behalf of the players I continue being a friend of. He’s a guy I like a lot and helped me in my time there. They were very happy for me. Everyone knows that I am a Manchester United fan and to beat Manchester City is always good too.”

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Rafael has also spoken a little about his time at Manchester United, and said the big reason he left Old Trafford is because manager Louis van Gaal didn’t really want him at the club.

“I think what weighed for me to move here was that with Van Gaal, I played very little. I wasn’t going to games with him for a certain time. It was clear that he would not use me. Sometimes I trained well but still I wouldn’t go to the games. He made it clear that he wanted me to leave. That weighed heavily. Then Lyon are a great club, one of the biggest in France, and has a history with the Brazilians.”

Signed by Manchester United from Fluminense in 2008, Rafael has spent seven seasons at Old Trafford, having left the club to Lyon in 2015. In his 170 appearances for the Red Devils, he’s won three Premier League titles.