Midfielder Angel Di Maria signs 4-year deal with PSG
ABS-CBN Sports on Aug 07, 2015 11:49 AM
New Argentinean winger Angel Di Maria, gives the thumbs-up sign as he poses with his PSG jersey during his official presentation in Paris, France. Thursday, Aug. 6, 2015. Angel Di Maria signed a four-year deal with Paris Saint-Germain on Thursday to complete his transfer from Manchester United. (AP Photo/Jacques Brinon)
AP Sports Writer
PARIS (AP) — Moving on from his English Premier League flop, winger Angel Di Maria signed a four-year deal with Paris Saint-Germain to complete his transfer from Manchester United on Thursday.
Di Maria, who struggled to adapt to the physicality of the Premier League during his one-year spell at Old Trafford, said he was wanted by clubs other than PSG, but was impressed by the depth of its ambition to win a first Champions League title.
He won the Champions League with Real Madrid last year, and was man of the match in the final.
Still recovering from a thigh injury, he is not available for the French league opener on Friday at Lille, and said in a Parisian palace conference room packed with journalists that he will need "two or three more weeks" of recovery before making his debut.
He will be introduced to the home fans on Aug. 16 against Ajaccio.
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press this week that Di Maria joined for a fee in the region of 63 million euros ($69 million).
United paid 59.7 million pounds for him last summer, the most expensive signing in the history of British football. But after scoring just three goals in 27 Premier League appearances, United and Di Maria decided mutually to part.
"Leaving United was not only my decision," he said. "I'm here because they wanted to sell me, it was a collective decision."
PSG lost out to United last season because of Financial Fair Play restrictions that have since been eased.
Now, PSG have made him the second most expensive player in French league history.
He will team with Uruguay striker Edinson Cavani, who joined PSG for a reported fee of 64 million euros when the club broke the French transfer record in 2013. He will also be reunited with Argentina teammates Javier Pastore and Ezequiel Lavezzi.
"Lavezzi has been telling me that PSG is a fantastic club," he said. "One of the factors that brought me here is my friendship with Lavezzi."
Since Qatari investors took over in 2011, PSG has spent heavily to build one of the most expensive teams in world football. The investment has taken a while to pay dividends. Laurent Blanc's team secured an unprecedented domestic treble last season, but has repeatedly failed to advance beyond the Champions League quarterfinals, losing 5-1 on aggregate to Barcelona this year.
"We've got the team to win the Champions League," PSG president Nasser Al Khelaïfi said. "With Angel Di Maria we will continue our European dream. We are close to achieving this dream, we will try this year. He is a big plus to our club."