Did you leave United because you were looking for a change of scenery?
“No. I always said that the manager would come and tell me what games I’d be able to get and different things. That was the case. I had a year left and Sunderland came in with a four-year deal so it was fairly straightforward. It (Old Trafford) was a home from home as such because I’ve been there my whole career. But if it was going to happen, it was going to happen. Life goes on.”
What do you think prompted the manager in to thinking it was time for a change?
“I think the finals against Barcelona were a key to the manager thinking: ‘Right, I have to get energy and vibrancy back into the squad’. And that’s clearly what he’s done.”
He laughs: “I can see that they’ve gone downhill, they’re not creating any chances, they’re struggling…”
Do you have any regrets?
“How could I have regrets? No, nothing like that, not at all.”
What were your highlights?
“One or two. Just everything; the whole lot. I couldn’t have asked for anything more.”
To mark the anniversary of United winning the Treble with a team that had academy products at the core, Made in Manchester is available for just £3 for today only. Some of the best football writers take a player each, from Sir Bobby Charlton to Ryan Giggs, George Best to David Beckham, Duncan Edwards to Paul Scholes, and many more, with 30 articles in total. All profit goes to Trafford Macmillan so please support this fantastic cause.