"There were problems with the coach at the time. But thanks to God, I was able to come to PSG and be myself again."

United made a loss when they sold Di Maria for 63 million euros (£44.3 million at the time), but it was very much PSG's gain.

Nicknamed 'El Fideo' (The Noodle)in Spain for his slender frame, Di Maria is in his fourth season in Paris and recently extended his contract to 2021.

He has scored or created more than 70 goals in Ligue 1 for PSG, although he was signed chiefly to win big Champions League games and has been unable to prevent his side being knocked out in the last 16 in each of the last two seasons.

Nevertheless, if Di Maria's days in Paris seemed numbered after Neymar and Mbappe signed in mega-bucks deals at the start of last season, he ended up being one of his team's most consistent performers in the last campaign.

Since then, the appointment of Thomas Tuchel has coach has only helped a player who can perform in central midfield as well as on the wing.

And if Tuchel's side are to overcome their injury problems and come away from Old Trafford in a strong position before next month's second leg in Paris, they will need Di Maria to show the United fans what they are missing.

"He was one of my favourite players when I used to watch him on television," Tuchel said at the start of this season after making it clear that Di Maria was just as important to him as the 'MCN' front three of Mbappe, Neymar and Edinson Cavani.

"He is a gift for me. Everything is very easy with him because he is a top professional. He has extraordinary quality and works so hard for the team."

Page 2 of 2