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Ander Herrera interviewed by France Football: “I like to be hated.”

Speaking in an exclusive interview with France Football this week, PSG’s new central midfielder Ander Herrera discussed his latest career decision, Manchester United and more. Some early highlights.

On why he joined PSG:

First of all, for the project. The club has a classy and glamorous side that I like a lot. Then, because I wanted to continue to play for a big club. And, honestly, I could not see myself playing in another English club. When you have played for Manchester United, it is difficult to go elsewhere. PSG, they have a project that is progressing incessantly. The way that PSG approached me was impeccable. I felt wanted. Thomas (Tuchel) called me multiple times to talk. He is someone who helps players become better. At 29, I still want to improve.

On PSG’s image abroad:

That of a giant! A club that is respected, that is classy. A club where three or four of the best players in the world play. I know too that it is one of the most hated clubs in France, and I like that.

On his best position:

Whatever I am needed to do. I have played everywhere since my career began: as a #6, an #8, a #10… With Mourinho, I also played as a central defender. I even played as a left-back, against Everton and as a man-marker on Eden Hazard. Everywhere.

On the club of his heart:

I was happy to play for Athletic Bilbao, another club that is dear to me, and for Manchester United, the biggest club in the United Kingdom, where I felt loved. Today, I am happy to be at PSG, the biggest club in France. I have always given everything to the clubs I have represented and I represent. But I cannot lie to you: the club of my heart is still Real Zaragoza, who I have supported as a child and where I started my career.

On his personality:

I am someone who is loyal, I have the same friends that I had aged 3. I see them regularly in Spain, sometimes go on holiday with them. I love to be with my family, even though I struggle to disconnect myself from football. I also like to travel, to discover new cultures, to meet different people. I refuse to live in this bubble that football is often stuck in.

On Marcelo Bielsa:

I could talk to you about him for two or three hours, but I am going to try to be short! He is the most unique manager that I have had in my career. I am not saying for better or for worse, but the most unique. He is football mad. With him, everything is different in the way of learning football: training, the way he understands and reads play. I remember the match analysis sessions… after the matches. We would watch the entire match that we just played, a few hours earlier. Sometimes it was annoying for some, but, for me, I loved it… He is a genius! It is a complete and utter source of joy for me to have been alongside him… Bielsa made me love football even more than I loved it before… He is someone who is honest and sincere, always.

 

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