Ji-sung Park was openly critical of his below-par start to the season, but insisted he’d come good - and he was right. He's been integral to United in the last month, even adding his name to Old Trafford’s long list of late matchwinners...
You were unhappy with your start to the season. What changed?
I was not satisfied with any of my performances, I just didn’t feel mentally right. Then I went back to Korea on international duty and, even though I didn’t play, the fans were hugely supportive of me. My friends and family encouraged me and said I would be fine when I returned to Manchester. I feel much better now and I’m happy with the way I am playing. Things are good for me.
When you're not playing well, how do you stay upbeat?
It’s important to keep thinking positively. Don’t worry about past games, like saying “I’ve played poorly', or 'I should have done this better” – just look to the future and work out how you can improve.
You’ve scored four goals this season. How many will you be satisfied with?
If I score 10 in any season I’m happy, so I’ll be aiming for that as it’s within my reach now I have four. I haven’t been doing anything new in terms of getting into more attacking positions; the manager hasn’t said anything to me other than to enjoy my football. That makes me feel comfortable on the pitch, which leads to more chances.
Is it important that the midfielders chip in with goals this season?
Yes, because if the midfielders are scoring more then we’re helping the strikers
and taking some pressure off them. If you have one player who scores all the goals, it becomes difficult for the team when that player is out injured. It’s something the midfielders here are all aware of and are always looking to improve on – myself included.
You’ve been at United over five years now. Do you feel like a senior member of the squad?
I guess so. I’ve been at the club for quite a while and I’m getting old! So yes, I feel like one of the most experienced players – in the Carling Cup game against Wolves a few weeks ago, I was one of only two or three senior players on the pitch.