Just like last year, Angel Di Maria will celebrate his birthday on the day of UCL round of 16. From nutmegging Juanfran and assisting Gareth Bale for the winner in 2013 CL final to his beautiful dink over Kasper Schmeichel vs Leicester to his out of the world performance against Barcelona last year, Angel Di Maria has given us many moments to cherish. A lean pacey and agile player, he never fails to turn the tables. His performances have been widely credited all over the world. He is also admired by both set of fans in a football match.
Today he has established himself as one of the best squad players in the world. His game always brings that extra bit to push further up. Whenever either of Neymar Cavani or Kylian Mbappe is absent, he steps up.
Today he is not regarded as a first team regular under Unai Emery but he is a player whom any manager with any system can rely upon. For example if you take note of last year’s Round of 16 first leg. Incidentally it fell on his birthday. And it couldn’t have been any better as he put in one of his finest performances to date. He ran riot as Paris cruised to a 4-0 win over Blaugrana. And exactly one year later, fans will be eagerly expecting his fireworks to see off defending champs and his former employers Real Madrid.
Di Maria is regarded as one of the most technically gifted players in the world. His skills and wing play are a treat to watch. Today, on his 30th birthday we bring to you some unknown facts about him.
Here are five interesting facts about Angel Di Maria.
Fact 1 – He once fell into a well and survived
Di Maria and his family had move to a new home and he was only one year old still using a walker. He recounts “I was a year old and had a baby walker and went outside and fell into a well. I was lucky because they saved me in time otherwise I wouldn’t be here to talk about it.”
Fact 2 – His first transfer fee were 35 footballs
He was playing for local club Torito when a scout from Rosario Central first spotted him. During an interview to Real Madrid TV he tells the story “They drove a hard bargain to release me. The transfer fee was 35 footballs.” Di Maria was only four years old at that time, so we need to keep that in mind, but nevertheless an interesting story.
Fact 3 – His doctor told him to be a footballer
Di Maria was a problem child from a young age, so his mother took him to see a doctor when he was three years old looking for help in finding a solution. He recounts the story “My mother got tired of me breaking everything in the house so she took me to see a doctor when I was three. I was running around the examination room breaking everything. The doctor just said ‘Sign him up for a sport’ and that is where my career began.”
Fact 4 – Meaning behind Di Maria’s tattoo
Before leaving Benfica in 2007, Di Maria and six of his friends had the following sentence tattooed ‘Nacer en El Perdriel fué y será lo mejor que me pasó en la vida’. You can see that tattoo on his left forearm.The English translation for the tattoo is “To be born in El Perdriel was and will be the best thing that has ever happened to me in my life.” The tattoo is a symbol for the seven friends, a reminder of where they came from.
Fact 5 – A winner
He played three seasons at Benfica before moving to Real Madrid, and during that time he won the Portuguese League and two Portuguese League Cups. In his last year he was also voted best player of the League. During his time at Real Madrid he won La Liga once with Jose Mourinho, two Copa de Rey, one UEFA Super Cup, one Spanish Super Cup and a Champions League. He was also voted man of the match in that final against Atletico Madrid. He won 2 Ligue 1 titles with Paris and 2 Coupe de Ligue. The Argentine is a winner; the trophies that he has won at Benfica , Real Madrid and PSG are proof of it.
He single handedly destroyed Barcelona in the Round of 16 first leg last year. Can he do the same this time around? Will his birthday motivate him to show Real Madrid fans that what they have been missing? Let’s find out tomorrow 1:15 AM.