By 90Min
August 18, 2017

Manchester United defender Eric Bailly has recalled how he used to collect change from phone boxes as he looked to make money for himself and his family growing up in humble surrounding in his native Ivory Coast, a far cry from the bright lights and riches of Old Trafford today.

Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, Bailly explained, "In Africa, there are people that live in much more difficult situations but, yes, as a child I started working.

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"I've had luck with my father's help but I also had to work," the centre-back revealed.

"I had a program after training in the afternoon in which I would go in front of my house to do various things and the phone boxes was something I did to earn some money and to resolve some of my issues.

"I cannot always rely on my parents. They've always tried to help me, but I had to do something to be able to get what I wanted."

Bailly's football career took off when he was spotted by Espanyol and made the move to Spain to join the club's youth team. He joined Villarreal in January 2015 after just half a season in Espanyol's first-team and was made into a £30m player by United only 18 months after that. To say his rise has been meteoric is perhaps an understatement. 


Looking ahead to this season with United, Bailly said, "I think that with all the hard work we're putting in we are going to demonstrate that we are again a world class team."

The 23-year-old is set to line up for United's second Premier League game of the season this weekend when the squad travels to south Wales to face Swansea.

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