New Manchester United defender Raphael Varane has sent a message of gratitude to his new supporters, thanking them for their warm welcome at Old Trafford on Saturday, prior to the 5-1 drubbing of rivals Leeds United.
The 28-year-old was presented to the home crowd ahead of kickoff, having finally completed his long-anticipated move from Real Madrid. The deal had been delayed due to quarantine rules, so Red Devils in the stadium were fortunate enough to catch the first glimpse of their new centre-back.
And Varane released a message to his new fanbase on Sunday morning, explaining that he is ‘very excited and happy’ to be a Man Utd player, and promising that he would work hard for his new team.
“Hi everyone, I’m very excited to be here,” Varane began.
“Thanks for the atmosphere at Old Trafford, thank you very much! I’m very happy to be here and I’m ready to work hard.”
Varane certainly received a hero’s welcome at Old Trafford, as he paraded around the pitch in a smart suit, holding a Man Utd shirt with the number 19 on the back. The World Cup winner’s choice of the number 19 jersey raised some eyebrows, but the reasoning behind that selection has in fact been revealed.
Manchester Evening News reports that the former Madrid star did want to don the number four jersey, currently occupied by long-serving Red Devil Phil Jones.
However, the 29-year-old, who has barely featured in recent years, refused to give up his number to the newcomer, meaning Varane had to settle for number 19, a shirt not traditionally associated with a starting centre-back.
The four-time Champions League winner will have been pleased with the performance he saw on the pitch however, with national compatriot Paul Pogba providing a record four assists in a 5-1 victory over bitter rivals Leeds.