2010 World Cup, the Reds hero declined a place on their standby list of players in order to start his pre-season training early ahead of a career-changing move to Dortmund the following month.
And after a successful spell in Germany - which later resulted in a dream move to United – that decision has been completely vindicated, proving the importance of hard work. Now, with another new manager to work with, Shinji hopes the same ethic impresses David Moyes.
“I always think that I must play well,” he told the Premier League’s official website. “And I always have an image in my mind of how I want to play, wherever the position. Whenever there is a tough time, whenever it gets difficult for me, I just train and look ahead to the future.”