Fred: I turned down Man City to play for Mourinho

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 22: Fred of Manchester United celebrates after scoring his team's first goal during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Wolverhampton Wanderers at Old Trafford on September 22, 2018 in Manchester, United Kingdom. (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)

Manchester United midfielder Fred revealed just how big an influence Jose Mourinho was in his decision to chose the club over rivals Manchester City

The Brazil international impressed both Manchester clubs in his five-year spell with Ukrainian side Shakhtar Donetsk.

Discussions between Fred and City reportedly began back in January over a transfer.

But the 25-year-old instead ended up at the opposite end of Manchester after learning of Mourinho’s interest.

“That’s true, I received an offer from them [City] and even talked to my Brazilian team-mates who play for our neighbours,” Fred told FourFourTwo.

“They were trying to convince me to join them, but in the end it didn’t happen. Then it was the summer and, as I said, there were other offers, including from United. I quickly decided that was the right move for me.

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“Mourinho is a top, top professional and every player likes to work with such a winner. I’m learning things from him, that’s for sure. He can be quite strict, but that’s part of his job.

“He’s also friendly and funny off the pitch, and jokes with us in the dressing room.

“Jose was crucial in my decision to join Manchester United and I’m grateful for his interest in my football.”

Fred joined United in June on a five-year deal for £52m and will take part in his first Manchester derby on Sunday.

The Premier League game at the Etihad Stadium will begin at 17:30 (CEST).