03/12/2012 08:00, Report by Ben Hibbs
1 of 2 Next 

Cantona interview: May 2004

In May 2004, Eric Cantona answered fans' questions sent in to ManUtd.com. In part two of this interview Eric talks about his relationship with United fans...

What kind of feelings do you experience when you return to Old Trafford? (Martin Svensson, Hammar)
I remember the times I had here and I would love to play here again. But to play you need to do too many things, things that I didn’t want to do any more. It’s always nice to have good memories, but sometimes people have so many good memories that they cannot leave. I try to use the past to breed a good future. I use the good memories I had here to give me a better tomorrow.

How does it feel when, seven years after you retired, the United fans still sing your name during a match? (Julian, Preston)
It’s great. I am very proud that the fans still sing my name. But I fear that the fans will stop tomorrow. Maybe tomorrow they will lose their memories of me.

Why do you fear it?
Because I love it. I love it when people tell me that the fans sing my name. Everything you love, you always fear you will lose.

Who is the greatest influence in your life and how do you feel when people say that you are the greatest influence in theirs? (Sam Parnell, Middleton)
I was influenced by managers and some players when I was young. I didn’t have a lot of idols. I loved Johan Cruyff as a player. Idols can help you to become somebody. You never know if you help others, I don’t know if I do or not. I always wanted to be myself and I tried hard to stay myself. It’s not easy to do that. If you are a good person, you can influence other people. But if you want to influence another person, you will influence nobody. You have to be yourself, do your job conscientiously and try to be a good person. Then maybe you will influence others. I don’t like those people who try to influence or give lessons to everybody. It should just happen naturally.

What do you feel is your greatest achievement in life? (Todd Shenk)
I am very proud about the time I spent after football. I am very proud about the man I am today. I wasn’t sure how it would work out. Even though I felt I was prepared to finish playing football, I was never totally sure how it would be. I didn’t know if I would be happy after football. 

How do you think you have changed?
You don’t change - your life around you changes. Everything is different. You don’t go to training every morning; you don’t prepare for a game on a Wednesday or a Saturday; you don’t have that adrenalin rush of playing in a game two times a week. It’s like a drug. Something you need to have. It’s not easy because one day you wake up and you are no longer a player. For 20 years, since I was

1 of 2 Next 


Premier League