Date:Tuesday January 13 2009
Imagine the scenario. There's a 21-year-old winger, fresh from Serbia, signing for the European champions. And what is he told when he arrives? That he's got to set himself the target of becoming the next Cristiano Ronaldo!
Fergie certainly doesn't make it easy for Zoran Tosic but if he thinks the lad's got a chance to reach that level, all the better. Let's see what the gaffer had to say after unveiling our new signing.
'We would like everyone to turn out like Cristiano. There is a difference because Ronaldo had this fantastic dribbling ability, whereas Zoran is more straightforward.
'But the point is we are planning for the future and the challenge any young player should set himself, no matter which club he is with, is to get to the very top. We are all proud of Cristiano achieving the status he has. But it is a two-way street.'
'The player must have the personal ambition, the desire and drive to succeed. But he also owes a lot to Manchester United for nurturing and encouraging him in the proper way at the right times.'
Well, Tosic is unlikely to show his potential immediately as he hasn't played a competitive game since December 10 and isn't expected to play this month. Earlier reports mentioned a possible February debut; the end of February is the latest suggestion.
'The physical part is pertinent, because the Premier League is competitive and tough. There is no getting round that. But given normal progress, he could be involved. It is a great option for us to have someone with a natural left foot in our team.'
The guy himself is patient enough; after all, for a long time he hasn't even thought about ever joining United.
'At the beginning I never thought me being anything to do with Manchester United was an option,' he said. 'We all know what sort of team they are and what kind of players we are talking about. Now it is up to me to train and improve enough to get in the team as quickly as possible.'
Tosic added, again, that it's a huge bonus having Vidic here; settling in should be much easier this way.
It's quite a shame Fergie isn't prepared to try him earlier. The Carling Cup semi-final second leg could be an excellent occasion to throw him in and see what he can do. But if he's physically not ready, then to quote the boss, there's no getting round that.
Date:Tuesday January 13 2009
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