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A new look Anderson reveals he is a changed man

by Sam Peoples

Manchester United’s Anderson has once again vowed to put his past behind him to try and kick start his career at Old Trafford in what he calls a ‘big season’ for himself.

The 25-year-old has spent six years at the club yet has averaged fewer than 30 games a season with injuries restricting his appearances and development.

His first season at the club (2007/08) was the only year where he featured in over half of United’s league games. At international level, all eight of his caps for Brazil came before 2009.

But he has insisted he will put his injury nightmares behind him and has been putting in extra training to try and force his way into David Moyes’ side.

“I have been eating well and sleeping well, while I have also been coming into training on my days off to do more work,” he told Inside United

“It has really helped me and I feel great. I just want to play as many games as I can. I just hope I can stay clear of injuries.”

Anderson has a habit of starting the season well, fitting into the fluid United system with ease before picking up an injury and thereafter struggling to regain fitness and form. It has been a cyclical process every year since 2008.

Last year, he was on an encouraging run of form before picking up an injury in the 4-3 away triumph at Reading in December. Prior to that, he scored a wonderful effort on his return from injury against Newcastle in the Capital One Cup in September before starring in United’s unlucky 5-4 defeat at Chelsea in the following round, where he provided three assists.

He also provided the impetus for United in coming from behind to defeat Queens Park Rangers 3-1 at Old Trafford in November, leading Sir Alex Ferguson to state that ‘the introduction of Anderson changed the game for us’ so we know that Anderson has it in his locker when he produces.

“I’ve been training hard on the training pitch and in the gym, and working on my conditioning,” he continued.

“I am pleased with how things are going and, whenever the manager needs me, I will be ready.

“I have been doing more running, which has helped my fitness. The physios in Portugal have helped me a lot, as have all the coaches at United.

“I have also been working hard myself. I have built up the strength in my knee, worked hard in training.”

Anderson had a great pre-season where he played more minutes than any player in the squad but he has only been handed a spot on the bench, an indication that he may find first team opportunities hard to come by.

Moyes trusts Michael Carrick and preferred to partner him with Cleverley so far this season but now £27.5 million Marouane Fellaini will push him further down the pecking order.

However, he has stressed that this is a ‘big season’ for him and he hopes to play a much bigger role than he has in recent years.

He added: “I think it’s a big season for me. For everyone. However, I don’t want to say that and then pick up another injury. I have often started seasons well, played six or seven games and then got injured.

“I’ll tell you at the end of the season if it’s been a big season for me!”

Anderson is at risk of sounding like a broken record by proclaiming this is a big season for him because he has said that for the last six years but Moyes will give him at least one year to prove himself.

Let’s just hope the 2013/14 season doesn’t turn out to be another Groundhog Day for the Brazilian.