Captain Nemanja made his return to the United line-up today with a solid 60 minute performance against Norweigan outfit Valerenga. Judging from the grin on his face in the interview, I think it is safe to say that he is happy to be back playing in red.
Speaking to MUTV after the game, he said:
“I felt well. After eight months without a game it’s obvious that you have to get used to your positioning, and still fitness-wise it’s not as hopefully it will be in a few weeks, but I’m pleased.
“My knee felt well, I felt well and hopefully the next game will be better.”
“It’s [the injury] hard, but it’s part of the football career. Any sportsman has the risk of injuries and hopefully this is the past and better days are coming for me.” Nemanja Vidic
Nemanja suffered a terrible cruciate ligament injury against FC Basel when Marco Streller fell on Vidic, forcing his knee outwards. It kept our captain out of the squad for eight months and we suffered in his absence. Jonny Evans may well have deputised well alongside Rio Ferdinand but with a young goalkeeper in the squad, we lacked the presence of a leader.
Any injury is a difficult time for a player and with such a long time on the sidelines, Nemanja had a tough time of it.
He said: “It was frustrating, but obviously I knew I would be out for six months. I tried to make the best of it, to work hard and when I come back to be the same as I was before the injury. This was my target and we’ll see how good a job I did in that six months. It’s hard, but it’s part of the football career.
“Any sportsman has the risk of injuries and hopefully this is the past and better days are coming for me.”
Having our captain back will be incredibly important next season. The presence of the imperious Serbian will toughen our defence back up and give us the backbone to try and knock City off their (temporary) perch.