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Kagawa: I am half satisfied

Shinji Kagawa is looking forward to starting the 2013-2014 season and showing people what he is really capable of.

Last season, despite showing flashes of brilliance, injuries and being played out of position meant we didn’t get to see Kagawa consistently at his best.

Next season, thanks to hard work, he hopes to end the year more satisfied than he did the last.

“It was great to win the title with United and to make it three in a row for me personally,” he told Inside United. “But I feel I still have work to do. I would say I am half satisfied and half unsatisfied. I want to be a better player year by year. I expect a lot of myself. I hope to show my dynamism, style and presence more. I think it is very important to keep working in your everyday training and in matches. You just have to keep practising. But you must also have a strong will. That is the key to playing in a foreign country, especially for me in Europe. It’s important to think positively and keep trying hard, imagining you are successful, even when things are tough. You have to believe in yourself. If you don’t, things can go wrong both on and off the pitch. And you can’t enjoy it. Being positive and believing in yourself is important, not only in football but also in improving as a person.”

About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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  1. LoneStarRed says:

    The book on Strootman is here .

    He has many many positive qualities but his very decided lack of pace, stamina and his slowness in playing the ball on seem to disqualify him from becoming a Red in my estimation.

  2. LoneStarRed says:

    And he (Strootman) is definitely of the Van Bommel mold. But he is an exceptional defensive mid.

  3. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Bleeding heck, kagawa’s fucking positon on the pitch does NOT hinder him, this is not subbuteo rigid football, the modern game encourages flexibility and more often than not, the best players, especially attacking mid playmakers have a free role. No one has to leave to accomodate anyone

  4. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Del bosque is trying to endorse barcelona mainly and then trying to seem unbias, he’s playing a part in trying to convince thiago to stay. Like i’ve said, thiago will have to show he has a strong mentality to withstand all these and leave.

  5. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Rooney drops deep, zlatam ibrahimovic does it, raul does and probably still hasn’t changed, del piero does it, lewandowski does it, van persie also does it. The best centre forwards are technically strong all round players and hence, they get involved in the build up play rather than sit in the box. Who knows why fergie picked danny, he wasn’t really playing as a centreforward that night was mainly tactical and justified his selection by putting in an outstanding performance.

  6. Teej says:

    If Rooney has to leave then I will chip in with flight fare to get him to a country further away as possible.Russia for starters would be great if not let him ply his trade in the us or the French projects.I know DM understands this and will not sell to a premier league rival.If he wants to stay in England then let him play for his home club Everton.

  7. Teej says:

    Anyone seen the new Liverpool away kit with a tinge of purple?Hahaha always trust the dippers and bitters for a few laughs.Hope they don this at Old Trafford when we meet.Gracious God I give up with whoever it is that designed such a hideous outfit

  8. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Deary me!

  9. Costas says:


    Del Bosque’s comments are hardly shocking. I remember saying a while back that Thiago won’t help his cause by joining Manchester United. No matter how many games he plays for us, Del Bosque will still pick the Barcelona and Real players ahead of him.

  10. aaronDS says:

    kagawabunga part 2 , and I just cant wait . hope we can see him played like ala Dortmund but Moyes will do his best and fingers crossed it all works out .

  11. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Costas – that’s del bosque living in a spanish bubble. Xavi’s 60games a year is starting to catch up on him. He’s getting constant niggles, isn’t able to recover as quick as he used, isn’t as sharp. Iniesta is the driving force in there, they will need to tweak things. Surely a thiago alcantara dominating games on one of the biggest stage of all should propel him close to the starting?. It would be bureaucratic bullshit if he doesn’t make it into the team whilst playing for united, it won’t be about football. I don’t know why thiago chose spain really, his style suits brazil.

    This same issue is affecting rafael. Granted daniel alves is more experienced but why on earth is rafael not making it into that team? How can they still hold a grudge after one mistake when marcelo makes tons of them? Rafael has been schooled in the PL and thought the art of being a complete fullback, it has taken him time but he’s elevating towards the top top bracket of players, that lad should be pushing alves and eventually take his place but brazilians are getting melodramatic over not winning the olympics. Pure utter crap if he doesn’t make the world cup despite hopefully displaying quality consistently as a united right back. On thiago, he should know he isn’t catalan, he doesn’t owe them fuck all. I’m sure he’s ended up with a beautiful catalan woman (not many will pass that on), the weather is great and food splendid but show some mettle thiago and leave.

  12. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Rafael is developing into a complete fullback. Able to combine brazilian flair with solidity at the back. He’s powerful and determined, a little footballing machine and brazil need that, give him back his place scolari, don’t be a cunt all your life. Apologies for the rant but a protest for rafael had to come out.

  13. slim says:

    Once again, late to the party and catching up on the posts from yesterday (Internet is wonky so forgive me). I’m seeing a lot of juicy talkng points in here and cant wait to get stuck into the comments.
    Rooney second to none in linking midfield and attack . L.O. FUCKING L
    Yeah like he did last year right?

  14. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Slim – proven quality isn’t earned by playing well for one year (last season), rooney has done it consistently for years and form may have dipped but he still remains a key player in the formation of attack, he did not have his best season but he still created more than most and scored enough goals that would make other strikers claim they had a good season.

  15. slim says:

    Totally forgetting about Thiago to be honest. There’s too much chatting going on in his ear and the move doesn’t look likely.
    Now on to the topic: I personally prefer Kagawa playing behind RVP. He’s just got the stuff needed to play behind the strikers we have at the club – RVP, Hernandez and Danny.
    Roo makes things complicated with his displeasure at playing on the left or right.
    Kagawa lacks the physical prowess to play on left or right , he’s more suited to congested areas, whereas Rooney isn’t.
    Roo has issues taking players on, attempting dummy passes, lacks a touch that puts the ball in a “safe” area and still puts him in a position to deliver a deadly ball to his team mate . (Danny trumps him in this respect)
    While he has a good football brain, its not brilliant and brilliance is needed for the role. So for me its the right or left for him.

    Instead of trying to move mountains to make Rooney tbe be all end all of everything. We should be looking to bring out the best in players like RVP, Kagawa and Hernandez(the latter in particular).We seriously don’t wanna mess that up. Ala Berbatov.
    Last thing we need is potential signings going “i don’t want what happened to so so and so happening to me”.
    We see it happening to Liverpool and Steven Gerrard. Rogers is only starting to see that they have to move forward with or without him. We all know what Rooney is capable of , however its up to him to silence the critics and so far he hasn’t. Kudos to him on the amazing stats he’s racked up , but surprise surprise, fans and indeed his team mates demand more from him. I know i fell in love with him because of his “style” and not his goal scoring ability. Scoring at United isn’t that difficualt anyway, not with he amount of chances we create. Dwight Yorke anybody? Hell, Forlan was getting the hang of it before SAF figured enough was enough. I’ll never forget his brace against Liverpool in his last season.

    My conclusion to this rant. Rooney shouldn’t hinder the progress of the overall squad because we’ve gone ahead and anointed him King of OT.His contribution to the squad is legendary no doubt but like i said it shouldn’t stop the squad from growing. Its time for a bit of re-jig in the squad here and there and his favorite position is under threat. Tough shit, he’s got to get on with it. And this is where i have an issue with him. I’m not sure he wants to “get on with it”. He wants things his way or else he’s ready to cause trouble .

  16. slim says:

    I’d take a punt on de jong. Say for instance Thiago decides to go to another Club or stays with Barcelona. Carrick and De jong hold the midfield. Kagawa, Rooney and Zaha/TV7/Nani back up RVP or Hernandez . Looks pretty good to me. Solid and mobile. Lets the creative elements of the squad do their thing

  17. slim says:

    samuel – united WE stand

    True. A season doesn’t make or break a player. I’m happy that he’s not lost the goal scoring touch but pretty disappointed he’s lost everything else. I don’t dispute Roo gets us 20-30 goals a year. His game has a striker is formidable but quite weak as anything else.
    He’s happy to cover every blade of grass . Good for him. But do we need him to? I’d say an emphatic No.
    He’d be doing half of the running if he kept the ball better, passed it more purposefully. But he doesn’t hence my reluctance at accepting he’s this wonderful link from midfield to attack. Stick him up top or as an inside forward and let the others who are more adept at the CAM role do the business. Simple

  18. slim says:

    samuel – united WE stand

    I hope Rafa continues to improve. You get the impression National side is pretty snobbish of the English league and its Brazilian contingent. I think he’ll make the squad for next years World Cup finals but i thinks its abit too soon to feature heavily. Not with others like Alves and others hogging the spotlight. His time will come. I just hope they don’t start poisoning the lad by asking him to move to secure a regular starting berth in the national squad

  19. slim says:

    I wonder who Wilf McGuiness recommended to David Moyes. Sick and tired of being held to ransom by other clubs. I know Januzaj got a squad number towards the tail end of last season but i reckon he’s another CAM. Anyone keeping tabs on central midfielders or Wingers

  20. lordrt says:

    Signed anyone yet??? Where’s Thiago? Where’s Cavani??? Where’s Baines??? :P

  21. ididnotzeeit says:

    Off topic, for all of the dippers’ outstanding comedy acts in the transfer market over the last decade or so, selling that Gru-looking, no mark cunt Jonjo Shelvey for 6 million quid is either a fucking masterstroke, or a lost bar bet, my guess is the latter.

  22. Rukky says:

    What a summer!

  23. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Slim – rooney hasn’t lost everything else, he’s still got that craft to carve things open but as you get more experienced, you focus on efficiency and consistency than any other flashy aspects. Rooney would usually rampage from anywhere on the pitch, he would want to get involved in everything but he’s now developed into a proper centreforward whose main role is smash goals in, it is completely unrealistic to be the player he was in previous years, he’s more tactically aware and has developed into the complete forward. I agree on your sentiments that kagawa is more of a playmaker than rooney, that’s probably because this is shinji’s natural role. Like I’ve said and I will reiterate, kagawa being positioned on the left won’t affect him, playmakers like him may seem stationed out there but he spends far more time combining in-field. Kagawa gets the left side role for japan yet he’s still their best player. Why? Because he’s given a free role to make an impact, what kagawa has to do next season is be more authoritative on the pitch and get involved more, he will hopefully return stronger, ready to make the difference.

  24. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Slim – scolari isn’t so snobbish when it comes to oscar, ramires and david luiz. I think his omission has something to do with error he made, that error was actually bourne out of trying to play the brazilian way rather than hoofing it up field. Hopefully he will be given his chance.

  25. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Januzaj can play out wide but I see him as another attacking.midfield playmaker. He could well be a first team player next season, I want moyes handing him a fresh long term contract, give more game time as wel, would pisd me right off if united lose him as he isn’t a cunt who got too big for his boots before doing anything worthwhile. Januzaj is down to earth and thankfully, has a decent agent who isn’t hawking him out to other clubs.

  26. slim says:

    samuel – united WE stand

    rooney hasn’t lost everything else, he’s still got that craft to carve things open but as you get more experienced, you focus on efficiency and consistency than any other flashy aspects.

    Sorry mate but i simply don’t agree with that. Nowt about being “flashy” . its just about doing it. Rooney wasn’t the hundred leg over type like ronnie, but he dropped the shoulder, beat a man with a feint, dribbled using his pace and power. All quite efficient, but fealess, brave.

    You hit the nail on the head. Kagawa plays on the left for Japan but is given a FREE role, as he was given the same free role at Dortmund playing behind the striker. But with Roo running round the whole place demanding the ball, thats not going to happen for the lad. Its Rooney that needs to be more disciplined. What striker in the world covers blade like he does? Even Tevez has mellowed. His running around stops before he gets to the center circle. Can hardly be authoritative if Mr Roo is demanding it all goes through him and delivers one of his Hollywood cross field passes and figures its job done. He’s going to have to work on this side to his game because unless there’s a serious drop in form from RVP he still won’t be give the lead striker role. He has to become a better provider. And he won’t unless he improves his touch, concentration, discipline, control and dribbling.

  27. samuel - united WE stand says:

    Slim – fair enough but like I said, rooney isn’t the same player he was, your looking back to an earlier stage of his career, the days in which he played and express freely. These days he has more baggage and has developed his game into being a centre forward. I still think rooney can carve up chances, he’s still got the imagination and guile, he still has an all round game better than most but I won’t dispute the fact he isn’t the same player, he’s more experienced and knows how best to be effective.

    Regarding kagawa, it is up to moyes to instruct rooney as to where he’s best employed but you can’t coach out what made rooney the player he is, he likes getting involved and taking responsibility on the pitch, up to kagawa to raise his game and be more influential, you have to earn the right to be authoritative by displaying quality and being a match winner. I think we may be looking far much into things, pretty sure moyes will decide what’s best and let’s not make van persie a guaranteed starter, it’s a fresh start with moyes and anything can happen, things change in football quickly and i know van persie is in imperious form at the.moment but talent wise, I don’t think he’s superior to rooney, I think rooney can match him at his best and has delivered more than the dutchman. We’ll see.

    On kagawa though, as I stated, getting that freedom for him to express will be key,.he isn’t a winger even though on the team sheet it says so, he drifts everywhere and that’s how best to get him playing, I think the more technical players you have around kagawa, the better, that lad could find a pass even when seemingly unimaginable. I also agree that rooney needs to shake off his dip in form and improve but we know a focused and motivated rooney is a threat to all defences in this league and in europe.

  28. slim says:


    Luiz got into the squad before he joined chelsea , same with ramirez. You’ve got me stumped on Oscar though. Its just feels that way to me i guess. Rafa’s being unfairly treated in my eyes

  29. In David We Trust says:

    slim – Again I disagree, you are putting way to much reliability on RVP, who is in his 30′s. Do we really want to be playing 1 upfront? no, and no offense, our wide players hardly score goals, so really you stop RVP, you stop most of united’s goals. United were sensational back in november when Rooney and RVP were upfront. Kagwa and RVP would be a very limited attack, and to think kagwa can replace rooney’s impact, is not going to happen. And what happens if RVP gets injured, we are stuck with hernandez and kagwa to compensate the all round impact of rooney and RVP, not possible. The Rooney and RVP axis gives united strength in depth not seen since the 08/09 season

  30. Traffordium says:

    Sad.Barcelona confirm Thiago will participate in their preseason.This means more time for Tito and the 3 barca mf muscateers to wisper sweet nothings into his ears.If Thiago makes it to Trafford,he will have been very determined to do so. Come on, Moyes-snap the lad!Otherwise I have learnt over the seasons that pessimism in the summer transfer window certainly helps.


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