EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEWS

16/12/2009 14:40, Report by Ben Ashby
1 of 3 Next 

England suits Obertan

Gabriel Obertan has hit the ground running since making his long-awaited United debut in late October. The Frenchman is now hoping to make further progress, following his first Barclays Premier League start against Wolves...

So Gabriel, were you pleased with your first league start?
Yes, I'm quite happy. I just wanted to play my game and show my qualities, hopefully I did that. I felt I was better in the first half when I slowed down a bit.

Were you nervous?
Not really, because Pat [Evra] was behind me. He knows how I play so it's easier for me. He can place me when we're defending, it's very helpful. But really everyone was encouraging me.

Is English football what you expected?
Yes. It’s quick – there’s a lot of space behind defenders. And every team wants to win the game when they play. In France, sometimes the first thing the team wants to do is not lose. But here, they all want to win. That makes the game more open and you have more chances. Every game is difficult. Even in the [4-1] win against Portsmouth it was difficult. Every game is different, and each one is like a combat, it’s a fight.

Have you had to adapt your game?
Maybe a bit, but I think my qualities were made for this type of football. So it was quite easy to fit in here. I was built for English football.

Are there any players you’ve modelled your game on?
When I was younger I liked Thierry Henry… then I liked Kaka and Cristiano Ronaldo.

What's your favourite bit of trickery?
I learned to play football in the street with my friends. And when you play street football, the things you want to do are all the tricks like nutmegs. My favourite is probably the stepover. So I like doing tricks - but only if they are effective. There's no point doing it if there's nothing at the end of it.

United have a tradition of wingers – are you an out-and-out winger?
I think for now I am a true winger. But maybe in the future I could play forward or striker. I like one-v-one – I’m quick and I like to run in behind defenders and create opportunities.

When teams put a lot of people behind the ball, does that make the winger’s job even more important?
Yes. I think wingers

1 of 3 Next 

OFFICIAL PARTNERS

Premier League