EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEWS

16/02/2014 09:40, Report by Adam Marshall
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Janko settling in

In an exclusive interview with Inside United, young defender Saidy Janko talks about his progression and explains how he has settled into life in Manchester… 

Your move only went through on deadline day last September – were you aware of it happening much before then?
No. I didn’t know because, after my trial, United said they would send an offer to FC Zurich but I was obviously never involved in that part of it. So I had to wait until the last week before it was confirmed.

When was the trial and how did it go?
It was in the summer. The first few days for me were difficult, as everything was new and United are a big club. But, after the first two training sessions, I managed to get to the same level and became used to it.

You first caught the eye in the Blue Stars tournament last year, playing for FC Zurich…
Yes, Zurich won it. It was the first time I’d played in front of a big crowd. Adnan Januzaj was voted best player in the tournament – he was outstanding.

Did United’s interest come as a surprise?
A lot of people came up to me and said I’d played well but I never expected something like that happening. I’d never heard anything about United being interested or impressed with me. Of course, I knew all about United because I followed the Premier League and everything around it – even if I confess I used to be an Arsenal fan!

Were there any players you particularly admired?
I always enjoyed watching Thierry Henry and also Didier Drogba at Chelsea. However, I didn’t really want to play up front myself. I knew I was not that type of player with those finishing skills. 

Have you always been such a quick and powerful player?
No. I was usually one of the smallest players in the team and the thinnest as well. I only started to grow when I was about 15 or 16. It just happened quickly. When I was small I had speed but, after around under-13 level, I lost it a little for a couple of years or so. I was still small and had to be clever with it. Once I started to grow I became a bit quicker again and everything came together. 

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