Javier Hernandez insists he has no qualms about acquiring the “super sub” tag following an explosive first 18 months with Manchester United.
The Mexican striker made his competitive debut for the Reds in August 2010 and has already netted 29 goals, with 10 of those coming off the bench. It’s an incredible record, especially given that, in the club’s history, only one player has bagged more goals as a substitute.
“Ole Gunnar Solskjaer,” Hernandez says, smiling. “I know.”
But even Ole took his time scoring them. Solskjaer’s 28 goals off the bench came from 150 substitute appearances; Chicharito already has 10 from 30.
“I don’t know what makes me effective as a substitute,” Hernandez says. “I don't have the answer.
“In football you can’t always come up with a reason, because of this or that. I don’t play any different [whether I start a game or come on as a substitute].
“If I play one minute, 10 minutes or 90 minutes I try to play the same. My mind is always to do my best and help my team. There are some times in the game when we need to score and perhaps I have had a little bit of luck.”
But is Hernandez concerned that the more he makes an impact from the bench the less he’ll find himself in the starting XI?
“I just want to help my team,” he says. “I don’t care if I’m on the bench. Last year I was on the bench at the start and then I was in the team towards the end of the season. The gaffer has the answers.
“Every player in every team wants to play as many minutes as possible, but I don’t care if I start or I’m a substitute. I just want to enjoy it. I am living a dream to play for Manchester United.”
Nobody would dispute that, although Hernandez has, at times this season, struggled to reach the dizzying heights he scaled in his maiden season as a