Belfast Telegraph

Matteo Darmian hoping to condemn Tottenham to defeat in White Hart Lane farewell

Matteo Darmian is hoping to spoil Tottenham's farewell party when Manchester United arrive for the final match at White Hart Lane.

Fresh from securing their place in the Europa League final, Jose Mourinho's men this weekend head to north London for what is sure to be an emotional fixture.

Sunday's Premier League encounter will be the final game in White Hart Lane's 118-year history, with Spurs set to make a temporary switch to Wembley while their new ground is finished.

Darmian expects the surrounding emotions to make a difficult match all the tougher and, while Europa League glory is United's priority, hopes to act as party pooper.

"I think Tottenham is a very good team so it will be difficult," the Italian said. "We only have a few days to recover but we have to be ready.

"We go there and try to win because I think playing this kind of game is always special, always a good feeling.

"We go there with the same mentality, same attitude and try to win.

"I think playing against Tottenham is always hard not just because it is the last game at White Hart Lane.

"I think they have a very good team so we have to be ready."

Darmian started December's 1-0 win against Spurs, moving sixth-placed United within three points of Mauricio Pochettino's men in fifth.

Fast-forward to May and Spurs are set to finish second after falling short in their pursuit of leaders Chelsea, whereas United's inability to kill games means they remain sixth.

Mourinho believes the top-four is almost certainly beyond them and pledged to change his team for United's last three league matches with the Europa League final against Ajax in mind.

Darmian has vowed to keep fighting for Champions League qualification through the Premier League until it is mathematically impossible and, if nothing else, w ants to head to Stockholm on a winning run.

"We are Manchester United and we always want to win every game," he said.

"Also these three games of the Premier League, we go to London to Tottenham this weekend, away against Southampton and then at home on the last game of the season in front of our fans and we want to win every game to be ready for the final.

"Of course wins help to win so we want that."

Darmian speaks with a conviction associated with Manchester United players, although speculation continues as to whether he will remain one for much longer.

The Italy full-back is currently enjoying an extended run in the team, but a lack of game time before that has led to links of a Serie A return.

"Of course, when a player is in a fantastic club like Manchester United they know there is a lot of competition because there are a lot of good players," Darmian added.

"I say always that I work hard from the first day of the season to be ready when the manager gives me a possibility (to play).

"The most important thing is when I play, to help the team and to win. That's it."


From Belfast Telegraph