to fight against all the things that are in my memory. I fight hard to look forward and have new goals every day and I don’t take time to think about all the great moments I enjoyed here. Only when I come back to Old Trafford do I allow myself to open the doors of my memory and think about my time at United.
You said in your interview with MUTV in December 2004 that you’d only come back to United if you felt you had something special to give...
For me United is the biggest club in the world and my greatest moments in football were here. I still love this club and will continue to love this club and if I think I can create something then maybe I could come back. As a player I wanted to create something and in my life I try to live in the world of creation. It’s not easy but I try to do it. So if I was to come back into football it would be because I think I have something new to give to the game. If I do come back I want to create a team that plays like no other team has ever played before; I would be very proud of that. I always want to be unique and I would want my team to be unique as well. Your team should be a reflection of yourself and your football ambitions. It should be like a mirror image of all the strategies and observations you have of everything to do with the game. I’m a futurist with lots of ambitions and I want to create something new for the future. You can be inspired by the past, but you shouldn’t live in the past and you shouldn’t live with the present. Sometimes I’m wrong and I am just a dreamer but this kind of idea will help to keep me alive.
How much would you relish the opportunity to work with Sir Alex Ferguson again?
He is the best I have ever worked with and he has many years left at United. But if I come back [to Old Trafford] it would be as number one. I played under some great managers in my career including Platini, Beckenbauer and Guy Roux at Auxerre. But for me Sir Alex is the best. Guy Roux worked with me at the start of my career from the age of 15 to 22, so of course I learnt a lot from him. But as a mature player, Sir Alex was the one who taught me the most.