Man United’s Antonio Valencia discusses ‘hard’ wing-back role
Antonio Valencia is loving lift at right wing-back
Antonio Valencia says he is enjoying his wing-back role in the Manchester United first-team.
Louis van Gaal has been criticised for his tactics in recent weeks after United managed to score one goal in three games before their 2-0 win at Queens Park Rangers last weekend.
Our mindset has to be the same as usual. We are Manchester United and we have to go to win – that’s it
Ecuador international Valencia has been ever-present at right wing-back over the festive period, creating assists in victories over Liverpool and the Hoops.
Although the position is more physically demanding than an orthodox right-back role, Valencia is enjoying playing in the system.
Speaking to United’s website, Valencia said: “I enjoy the attacking side of the wing-back role.
“I like driving forward as I always have a lot of options in front of me and I enjoy the fact that it’s hard work, too!”
Valencia is expected to continue his run in Van Gaal’s starting line-up on Friday night when United face Cambridge United in the FA Cup fourth round.
But the South American, who has won two Premier League titles and the League Cup since his move to Old Trafford in 2009, warned his Red Devils team-mates not to underestimate their League Two opponents.
“For a footballer, the setting doesn’t matter,” Valencia added.
“You just want to go out there and do your best, and that will be our mentality at Cambridge. It doesn’t matter if the stadium is impressive or not; we have a job to do and we’ll take it seriously. Our mindset has to be the same as usual. We are Manchester United and we have to go to win – that’s it.
“It’ll be treated just like any other game in the Premier League. We train hard and then make sure we get the rest in so that we’re ready. The level that the opposition play at doesn’t affect our preparation.”