Shinji Kagawa has admitted to feeling ‘lost’ in the early months of his Manchester United career and has reiterated a feeling of disappointment at his performances during his debut campaign in England.
Despite a slow start, the 24-year-old finished 2012/13 in good form and looked to be finally getting to grips with the physicality of the league after an injury-hit beginning following a £17 million move from Borussia Dortmund.
But the playmaker, who has joined the squad this week in Japan, reiterated his disappointment with his performances on a personal level despite securing his third title in as many years last season.
“I’m happy we won the league but I’m not satisfied with my performance,” Kagawa told TV Tokyo.
“The club has a long history and it was great that I could play in Sir Alex Ferguson‘s last season.
“At first there were also moments when I felt a bit lost but I tried not to give too much importance on such a feeling.”
After a season of adapting to another culture and style of football, Kagawa has piled the pressure on himself and is determined to impress next season.
With Wayne Rooney‘s future up in the air, Kagawa has been tipped for a big role in the squad given his ability to play as the #10 and it is something he wants to show the fans he can do.
“All I can do is keep showing what I can,” Kagawa continued. “I have no excuse any more after a year in the Premier League.”
The former Dortmund favourite also revealed his desire for Champions League glory after watching his old club come close to lifting Europe’s most coveted trophy in May.
And in a statement which is bound to be misconstrued and completely blown out of context, Kagawa admitted he’d like to return to Dortmund in the coming years after enjoying two extremely successful years with Jurgen Klopp’s men.
“Watching Dortmund play in the final, I really thought I want to do well in that stage, in the Champions League.
“Yes, one day I will [return]. If Dortmund are ok with it.”
It is of course not uncommon for a former player to retain a certain affinity with an old club. From a United point of view, let’s just hope that doesn’t happen for a while.
Kagawa has now joined up with the squad out in Japan and will likely play for the first time under Moyes when we face off against Yokohoma tomorrow.