Sharpe: Why Robbo knew everything about the game
If you ever need some protection on a football field, former Manchester United winger Lee Sharpe believes there is no one better to have in your corner than club legend Bryan Robson.
‘He seemed to be on another level’Video
“Paul Stewart has done me early,”remembered the then youngster, who had signed from Torquay United in 1988.
“I'm on the edge of the box, passed the ball back to the keeper, and Paul Stewart's put his studs right down the back on my ankle.”
“Robson's gone, 'Are you alright, kid?' and I'm like, 'Yeah, yeah', continued Sharpe.“He's like: 'C'mon then, let's get this game going.'
“About 10 minutes later, Paul Stewart has got this ball, a little trickly ball has come into him in the centre circle, and Bryan Robson’s just gone straight through him. He’s gone straight through him from ankle height to about waste high with a forearm smash to the throat.
“Paul Stewart landed on the deck, virtually crying, getting carried off, and Robson’s turned around to me, winked and gone: ‘You are alright now kid.' I went, ‘Oh yes, I am'.”
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“He just seemed to be on another level,”he explained.
“You know what it’s like when you are in the game, to sit in the stand and to watch a game you can see everything, you can see every bit of space, you can see where everyone’s moving. When you are in amongst it, it is hard to see things because there are bodies all around you.
“But Robson just seemed to have his overview of everything, knew where everything was, where we were getting attacked, where we were attacking other teams, where they were weak, where we were strong. Knew what sort of pace the game needed to be played at. What the game needed at any particular time and always just was composed and had time and helped you out. He stood close to you when you were struggling. Gave you room when he knew you were playing well and when you could get on with it. He just knew everything about everybody and everything about the game. He was just on another level.”
It’s Lee Sharpe!Video
“Even later on when I was playing regularly, there was myself, Giggs and Kanchelskis [who] were probably the only three players who couldn’t kick them back and sort of hurt them if you like,”said Sharpe.
“We had a team full of aggressors who just wanted to fight people as much as play football. The manager was big into us being looked after, especially young lads getting in the team.”
Listen to Sharpe's UTD Podcast on Deezer and all your favourite podcast platforms from 17:00 BST tonight (Monday).
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