Belfast Telegraph

Ferguson: Anderson almost left

Sir Alex Ferguson has admitted Brazilian midfielder Anderson was talking about quitting Manchester United last season.

The 22-year-old endured a difficult campaign and was tipped to be eased out of Old Trafford during the January transfer window but he stayed, only to suffer a cruciate knee ligament injury. However, Anderson is now on the road to recovery and began training on Friday.

"He wants to play every game and train every day but that is a problem for me because at 22 he has not got the maturity to understand we operate a squad here," said Ferguson. "When he does understand that, he will be a fantastic player here but last season he was talking about leaving because he was not playing in every game."

Rather than put his arm around the player's shoulder, Ferguson opted to stand well back from someone who first made his mark with FC Porto in the hope that common sense would eventually prevail.

In that sense, Anderson's extended break came at a good time, with Ferguson now believing the player can fulfil his massive potential.

"Maybe it is a good thing he has been injured for a spell because he can look at the situation," said Ferguson.

"In some ways, I don't want to change his mentality because it is wonderful to see someone who wants to play every minute of every day.

"If you have someone with that enthusiasm, you have to be careful you don't check it to the point when you lose it.

"I didn't talk to him about leaving. I just let him get it out of his system. Maybe the injury has quelled the storm in his body because he came back here with the same enthusiasm and has been telling me he is ready to play.

"Everyone has seen the quality in his game and he will get his opportunity."


From Belfast Telegraph