Michael Carrick reflects on his decade at Manchester United

Michael Carrick and Juan Mata

Today marks 10 years since Michael Carrick made his Manchester United debut away at The Valley against Charlton Athletic. The midfielder came on to replace the tireless Ji-Sung Park towards the latter stages of the game, in a Premier League fixture Sir Alex Ferguson’s side came away comfortable 3-0 victors.

United’s number 16 who signed from Tottenham Hotspur for a fee of around £18.6million during July 2006, may have seemed big money at the time, although, it seems nothing short of a bargain when you compare it to the prices footballers go for this day in age, especially for a player who has provided the club with 10 years of service and has won all of the honours he has. The humble midfielder has admitted when reflecting on his debut that he did not expect to win all the competitions he has managed to, however, he portrayed the attitude of a true winner by revealing he has his eyes on the next prize when speaking about some of his glorious career moments.

“When I signed, I came here just hoping to try to force my way into the team, ten years later, to be here and have had a decent time, winning some good things, it’s a bit strange how quickly it has all gone, but hopefully there is still more to come.”

The hunger and desire of the player are clearly still there for all to see by the man who Jose Mourinho ensured signed a new one-year deal at the football club earlier this summer. Carrick has won five Premier League titles, a UEFA Champions League, a League Cup, a FIFA Club World Cup and more recently the prestigious FA Cup. The 35-year-old was fearing his club collection would be incomplete when it came to the day he hung up his boots with only the FA Cup missing before last season and he has spoken of his relief when he finally got his hands on the trophy following United’s 2-1 win against Crystal Palace at Wembley in May.

“The FA Cup was massive and a big relief more than anything to me. To finally get it after trying for so long to get my hands on it and win it was quite emotional really on the day.”

United’s Players’ Player of the Year in the 2012-13 season reiterated his appetite for winning trophies by revealing what spurs him on to keep on going.

“To get your hands on it and taste it again makes you feel you want to win more and more.”

Carrick is probably one of the most underrated players of his era, however, you get the feeling that he is more than appreciated by the Manchester United fan base. Still now he is a player that is important to the first team set up as his experience and understanding of the football club is second to none – although, he is certainly not a spare part just used for coaching, on the field he can still be extremely effective, his eye for a pass and ability to help Mourinho’s men control a game is something that will be more in handy throughout the season, it was also something that has helped the club seek success over the years he has spent at Old Trafford.

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