In the summer, Arsenal’s Andrei Arshavin tipped us off to Russian goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev, with Edwin Van der Sar not getting any younger and Ben Foster battling injury.
Ahead of our match against Akinfeev’s team, CSKA Moscow, Sir Alex Ferguson was asked whether he was interested in signing the keeper. Our manager predictably responded by claiming we already had Van der Sar’s replacement in our squad, although you do have to wonder if Ferguson really believes Foster has what it takes.
After the match, Akinfeev spoke fondly about our club and players, although promises us a tougher match when they come to Old Trafford.
“I see Vidic as a very strong player,” Akinfeev said. “I think he made the right choice by going to England. And next to Rio Ferdinand, he will certainly learn many lessons. Everyone knows that United are a great club, who have won countless titles. The players in the team are at the highest level. You can say that we didn’t deserve the defeat, but on the other hand, you can’t win when you spend almost the entire match defending. We have to create chances at their end. At Old Trafford it will certainly be even more difficult than in Moscow.”
Akinfeev wasn’t the only one to be complimentary after the game though, Sir Alex Ferguson had a few kind words for the goalkeeper.
“Akinfeev had an outstanding game,” said the manager. “We had to wait a long time for chances on the CSKA goal.”