Gary Neville was full of praise for Joao Cancelo after a pair of assists in the Manchester Derby. The Portuguese left-back also picked up a hat-trick of assists in their Champions League encounter against Club Brugge. Cancelo played under Gary Neville during his short spell as the Valencia manager. He revealed that he was impressed with his attitude in Valencia before his development at Juventus.
“I absolutely loved him when he was out there,” said Neville of his time with Cancelo at Mestalla.” Gary Neville said about Joao Cancelo. “There was a vulnerability to him when he was out there because he was so young. He is so hard on himself, Joao Cancelo. In training, and I don’t know if he is still the same now, he used to be his biggest critic. If he made a mistake he would throw his arms on the ground and start cursing himself.”
“I used to say to him, ‘Give yourself a break.’ It is hard enough in football as it is. You will give the ball away, you will make mistakes, you will give goals away.'” he added. “I had him as a very young player at Valencia but you could just see exceptional talent. I made calls back to England – and you can imagine which club at the time – saying that if you are ever going to take a young player that is a young player you would take. He and Andre Gomes were, I felt, exceptional talents who could definitely come and grace the Premier League. Andre has had bad injuries which have stopped him.”