Exclusive Q&A: Antonio Valencia

"It would be great to sample any silverware in my first season. We want to win trophies at all costs."
03/02/2010 11:28, Report by S Bartram, A Bostock
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Valencia seeking silver

Antonio Valencia has impressed in his first term at United and although he now faces stiff competition from Nani for the right-wing berth, the Ecuadorian is loving life as a Red...

Besides Wayne Rooney and Patrice Evra, you’ve played more games than anyone for United this term. Did you expect that?
To be honest, no. I thought I’d be used sparingly at first and then more as I settled in at the club, but as a footballer you train hard so that you’re always prepared to play. Then it’s down to the manager to make the decisions, and he has given me lots of opportunities. I’m really enjoying my United career so far, and this is just the start.

You were voted ManUtd.com's Player of the Month in both November and December. Is it nice to be recognised by fans?
It’s a source of motivation to keep working harder and harder and to keep trying to win these awards. The fans are incredibly important, so it’s very nice to get their recognition.

Why has your goalscoring improved so much since your Wigan days?
I’m getting into the box more than ever before in my career. I’m encouraged to get forward and there are a lot of balls coming in from the left side, so I’ve been able to get to the far post and get on the end of a few crosses.

How do you rate United's chances of winning some trophies this season?
We want to win as much as we can. You could see our determination in the Carling Cup semi-final, and I'd really like to play at Wembley.

It would be great for me to sample any kind of silverware in my first season. We want to win trophies at all costs and to retain the Premier League title and make it four in a row. That is very, very important to us.

Would the success be celebrated in Ecuador - do United have more fans there now you're here?
I wouldn't say all of Ecuador are now United fans, but certainly my family and friends have converted. They’re all big football fans, though; they don’t just watch the games for me. A lot of them came over to Manchester in December and stayed to watch a couple of games. Luckily one of those was the Wigan game, so they got to see me score!

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