Diogo Dalot makes Antony claim ahead of Brighton FA Cup semi-final

Diogo Dalot of Manchester United celebrates with teammate Antony at Nottingham ForestDiogo Dalot of Manchester United celebrates with teammate Antony at Nottingham Forest
Diogo Dalot of Manchester United celebrates with teammate Antony at Nottingham Forest
Manchester United’s Brazilian attacker is starting to show his best form ahead of their FA Cup semi-final clash against Brighton and Hove Albion at Wembley Stadium

Diogo Dalot says Antony is reaping the rewards for his hard work after the big-money summer signing scored one and provided the other as Manchester United beat Nottingham Forest.

Erik ten Hag splashed the cash to bring in the Brazil international from former club Ajax, who were paid an initial 95 million euros (£82.1m) that could rise by a further five million euros (£4.3m) in add-ons.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Antony is the fifth most expensive signing in Premier League history and that eye-catching outlay has led to heightened expectations on the young winger.

The 23-year-old has not been effective in every match but shone at the City Ground on Sunday, scoring his first Premier League goal since October before expertly slipping through Dalot to wrap up a 2-0 win.

In the post-match press conference Ten Hag said Antony “has to step up” as the United boss demanded even more from a player who has scored eight goals in 35 appearances in all competitions.

“I think everybody is seeing he’s getting his rewards now,” Dalot said of his fellow scorer against Forest.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“He works very hard, he is a kid who works every day very hard to be at this top level.

“He fights for the team, he is a team player, everybody can see that, and he’s getting his rewards.

“I’m sure he will be very helpful for us. He showed with the goal and the assist that he’s a very important player for us.

“I tried my best (to help him adapt). I was not the main character on his journey so far. He was and he still is, but I think everybody helped him to get comfortable.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“He knew the manager already, so he knew how he likes to play, how he wants to play and we tried to help him settle in quickly and we’re very happy with him.”

Dalot’s shared language has helped build a bond with Antony, with the Portuguese and Brazilian celebrating the second together with a posed handshake.

“It’s our thing,” the United full-back said. “I’m happy that I have a good relationship with him. He’s a fantastic kid, I like to be around him.

“We spoke, he was going to score… we were not expecting I was going to score as well! We both did and we were happy with that.”

United’s victory at the City Ground gives them daylight in the race for the top four and saw them surpass last season’s Premier League points tally with eight games to spare.