league. Even if I’d have scored half the number of goals and we’d won the league I’d still have been happy. The Golden Boot would be like a bonus. In a way it’s not an honest award – even if you end up with the most goals in a season, those goals are the team’s goals and many will have been made possible by other players. They should make a Golden Boot for the whole team.
Have you improved as a player since joining United?
I try to improve every day, every month, every game. That’s my aim. You get spells that don’t go so well, when you don’t score so many goals. And I had one of those this season. Even so, I kept clearing headers from corner kicks, I cleared balls off the goal-line, I set up team-mates to score goals. I was never worried that I’d never score a goal again in my life. That 10-game streak where I didn’t score seemed a bigger issue for the media than it was for me.
You mention your defensive duties – clearing corner kicks, making goal-line clearances...
That’s part of my job. I’m not judged on that by outsiders but, I can assure you, I’m judged on that by my team-mates and the manager. That’s something I’ve agreed to do for the team, so it’s just as important as scoring goals. I have a very important role when it comes to defending corners, free-kicks and set-pieces. I love to do it, too. It gives me a buzz when I clear a corner with a nice header and then we launch a counter-attack. I’m not a player who only thinks about scoring goals – I want to give football more than that. Football has so much more to offer than just goals.
You’ve scored a lot of goals this season and a lot of goals at Old Trafford, but only one down at the Stretford End...
I know! But I don’t know why. I’ve also scored quite a few goals in the second half at Old Trafford, but in those games it’s just so happened that we’d changed ends and we were attacking the Stretford End in the first half. I don’t understand it. I want to score more goals there, though. In fact, I promise I will score more goals at the Stretford End. I’m aware of the statistic and it’s time to change it!