Di Maria moved to Old Trafford for a then British transfer record £59.7 million in 2014 but endured a difficult season at the club before he was sold to PSG.
His spell in Manchester was marred by a break-in at his home where armed raiders eventually fled empty-handed.
Speaking on Los Angeles de la Manana, Di Maria’s wife Jorgelina Cardoso discussed the Argentina international’s problems in Manchester and said: “I remember Angel coming up and saying, ‘An offer from Manchester United has come in. Maybe we’ll be a little more financially secure.’
“It was horrible. Manchester is the worst. It is all horrible in Manchester. In fact, I fought a lot with Angel about it. We lived in Madrid, Angel played in the best team in the world which for me is Real Madrid. We were perfect, the weather was perfect, the food was perfect. And suddenly he said that there was a proposal to go to Manchester. I told him, ‘Not a chance. You are going alone. ‘No, come on. Let’s go’, he replied.
“There was a lot of money involved, and afterwards, the Spanish were calling us money grabbers. And they were right. If you are working for a company and the competition comes along and offers to pay you double, you take it.
“I didn’t want to go to Manchester because I am friends with Gianinna Maradona, who was married to [Manchester City‘s] Sergio Aguero, and we flew from Madrid to his house in Manchester to pay him a visit for two or three days when Angel had a few days off at Real Madrid.
“It was horrible, s—. We went to the house and we were like … ‘See you later guys, we’re out of here’. When we left, I said to him, ‘Go to any country — except England‘. Anyway, one year later and there we were in England.”
Di Maria left for PSG in a £44m deal in August 2015 and returned to Old Trafford in February five years later, where he was struck by a bottle of beer as he celebrated during PSG’s 2-0 Champions League round-of-16 first leg win over United. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side completed a remarkable comeback in the second leg, winning 3-1 to go through on the away goals rule.
Di Maria’s wife continued the ill-feeling when discussing the city of Manchester and its female inhabitants.
“The people are all pasty-faced, prim and proper … weird. They’re walking down the street and you don’t know if they’re going to kill you or what. The food’s disgusting. All the girls are all dolled up to the nines, perfectly made-up and there’s me with my hair in a bun and with no make-up on,” she added.
“We try to be closer when things go bad. I did not blame him for being there. I just told him, ‘Darling, I want to kill myself, it is already night at 14:00 p.m. in the afternoon.’
ESPN has approached the Mayor of Manchester for comment.