memphis-depay:Memphis Depay has lifted the lid on the meaning behind his tattooed body, explaining why he has a huge lion sprawled across his entire back.
memphis-depay:The former Manchester United man is now plying his trade at Lyon, but during his time in the Premier League he received perhaps his most impressive ink.
Speaking to Unscriptd this week, the Dutchman explained the meaning behind the huge animal, which took an entire day to complete.
Memphis Depay has appeared in a YouTube video to explain the meaning behind his tattoos
Depay explains that the lion represents him, and that he feels he grew up ‘in the jungle’
memphis-depay:The 23-year-old shows off his tattoos after a match during his time at PSV back in 2014
‘The lion on my back represents me – I have the heart of a lion. I got it done in Manchester. It took a long time because it’s so big, maybe like 24 hours in total
‘I always had a feeling that I’ve been brought up in the jungle: I was always outside, I’ve been to rough areas and I’ve been through rough times. The lion is for me, “the king of the jungle”, and I always stayed on my feet even though it was rough.’
Depay’s tattoos don’t stop there though, and he explains the sentiment behind a small circle on his wrist – one of his favourites.
‘One of the tattoos I really like is the small circle,’ he admits. ‘It’s for the small circle that I have, the small circle of friends – they are family for me. I’m not really moving with a lot of people.
Depay has another lion on the back of his left calf, and his body is covered in different ink
Former Manchester United winger Depay was speaking to Unscriptd about his impressive ink
memphis-depay:Depay points to one of his favourite tattoos, a small circle imprinted on the side of his wrist
The tattoo represents his close ‘circle’ of friends: ‘I’m not really moving with a lot of people’
memphis-depay:’It’s for us, more a relation thing, a trust thing and it’s a very nice symbol to say we have a small circle and we keep it tight because these days it’s very special.’
memphis-depay:Alongside his club career, Depay has made 27 appearances for the Dutch national team, featuring – and scoring – at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, that experience merited another permanent piece of artwork on his body.
‘I have one on my ribs, this one: the Jesus of Rio,’ Depay continues. ‘I got that one when I played in the World Cup and I scored my first goal. That switched a lot of things in my career so that’s one of my favourites.’
Depay failed to hit it off at Old Trafford, and left the club after 18 months to join Lyon.
In Ligue 1, he is back in form and has just collected the award for Goal of the Season after a spectacular strike from the halfway-line.