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Rory Rory Man United

"United have had a great knack over the years of producing good football when they need to. It’s something that great players and great teams seem to do. That's what makes the difference between good players and great players."

- Rory McIlroy, US Open golf champion

20/06/2011 08:55, Report by Alan Beck
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Rory: Reds are my club

The newly-crowned US Open golf champion - Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy - is a diehard United fan, as he was only too glad to tell us earlier this year...

What are your earliest memories of supporting United?
All my mum’s side of the family are United supporters – but my dad’s actually a City fan so we have a few rows in the house! My first memory is the FA Cup final in 1996. I remember the green and white that Liverpool wore and, of course, Cantona’s late winner.
 
How often are you able you get to Old Trafford?
The first time was when I was about 14 or 15, and we beat Liverpool again. I’m a season-ticket holder now, so I’ve been to a few games this season, and we’ve never lost when I’ve been there. I love to get over as much as I can although one of my favourite memories watching United was away from Old Trafford, at Anfield in fact, when John O’Shea scored in injury time at the Kop end.
 
How do you follow the team when you’re away on tour?
[Fellow Northern Irish golfer and deposed US Open champion] Graeme McDowell is a big United fan as well, so any time we’re away we try to catch the games together. I’ve spent a lot of time away from the golf course with Graeme in the past few years, and most of that time has been going to a bar somewhere in the world to watch United.

Who are your favourite United players?
Beckham was the big one for me growing up. Roy Keane was another hero – he was massive, and he has the Irish connection as well. I loved Gabriel Heinze when he was there and I love Patrice Evra now. I don’t know why I love Patrice so much, he just brings so much to the game. He gives a bit of an edge to it.

What’s the secret of the Reds’ success?
It’s almost a habit. United have had a great knack over the years of producing good football when they need to. It’s something that great players and great teams seem to do. And that’s what makes the difference between good players and great players.

More - United will follow McIlroy to the US this summer; find out more in our Tour 2011

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