Memphis Depay can expect to be “eaten raw” on his return to PSV when Manchester United visit for Tuesday’s Champions League clash, according to the club’s former coach.
The Netherlands winger left for Old Trafford this summer and was handed an early chance to visit his old stomping ground when United were pitted against the Dutch champions in August’s group-stage draw.
Daley Blind is also making his first return to face Eredivisie opposition since swapping Ajax for United last year, and Aad de Mos – who coached PSV between 1993 and 1995 – says neither player will be given any quarter.
“Depay is not going to get one bit of joy out of his return to Holland,” he said to Omroep Brabant.
“Santiago Arias, the Colombian international defender who knows him inside out, is going to eat him raw.
“And if Daley Blind thinks he can come and enjoy a bit of freedom, or dominate the game again, then he will soon realise all the PSV players are going to be after him. They will not leave him alone.”
United head into the game, their first in the Champions League proper since defeat to Bayern Munich in April 2014, on the back of a morale-boosting 3-1 win over fierce rivals Liverpool on Saturday.
Louis van Gaal says he is unlikely to risk captain Wayne Rooney, who missed that victory after picking up an injury in training, meaning Marouane Fellaini is expected to lead the line in attack despite Anthony Martial’s goalscoring debut.
Phil Jones (shin) is not likely to be fit for the matchday squad but United, who have lost just once in their last four visits to Holland, have an otherwise clean bill of health for the trip to the Philips Stadion.
PSV find themselves two points behind Ajax after the first five games of their title defence, but Saturday’s 6-0 thrashing of Cambuur extended their unbeaten run in all competitions to 12.
Coach Phillip Cocu, who played under Van Gaal at Barcelona, is relishing the prospect of PSV’s first Champions League appearance in six years and their first competitive meeting with United since 2000.
“It is a very tough draw, but on the other hand it is also great to play against Manchester United and welcome Louis van Gaal and of course Memphis Depay,” he said
“We expect some tough games but it will motivate us even more.”
Attacking midfielder Adam Maher sat out the thrashing of Cambuur and will face a late fitness test to determine if he is ready for Tuesday, while Jetro Willems and Florian Jozefzoon (both knee) are long-term absentees.