Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic has opened up on his decision to have a groin surgery right before the start of the 2018/19 season, with the Serbian revealing he was playing through the pain barrier towards the end of the last campaign.

The towering Serbian was an instant hit after his summer move in 2017 and while he represented his country at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, the defensive midfielder missed the first couple of games of the current season as he recored from his operation.

“I’d had this injury for a few months and, when I went to America, in the first training session, I didn’t feel well and I asked the doctor to see what he could do,” Matic stated in an interview with Inside United.

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“I had the operation in Philadelphia as, after the scan, the doctor recommended surgery as the only way to fix the problem. I feel good now.”

Matic has emerged as Jose Mourinho’s go-to players for the past year or so, as the experienced midfielder rarely has a poor outing.

”I could see I couldn’t give my best because this injury was serious. It was painful so I needed to fix it. Sometimes, you can play through the pain and I played the last few months of the season with the pain but I think, for this season, it was better to fix the problem.”

The Serbian missed United’s 1-1 draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers as he was serving a one-match suspension after being sent off during their win over Watford.

“I didn’t want to spend time during the season fixing it as I need to be ready for the season that we have.”

Matic will now be available for the Red Devils’ Carabao Cup clash with Derby County in midweek.