Schneiderlin: If I have to hurt my former teammates today, I will
Morgan Schneiderlin will get his first taste of English football’s biggest game today, and has given an exclusive interview to Sky Sports ahead of the game.
Two of his former teammates – Dejan Lovren and Nathaniel Clyne – are likely to line-up for Liverpool at Old Trafford, but Schneiderlin is in no mood for niceties:
“On the pitch we are not friends anymore. On the pitch we will fight for our colours and fight for our team. There will be no friends. It is hard, but it is life. I fight and my team-mates fight to win the title. We won’t let anyone put this in between us. It’s important to stay focused and if I have to tackle him and hurt him in a good way of course, I will do it.”
Speaking about the game generally, Schneiderlin seems fully up for the occasion, and as an established Premier League player, he’s well aware of the rivalry.
“I relish it very much… I can’t wait to get started, to feel this atmosphere in the stadium and on the day of the game. It will be my first one and I hope to start it with a win.”
And whilst he’s not scared to “put himself about,” he knows the importance of not getting carried away – a not-so-subtle dig at Stevie G, perhaps?
“We have played in big games before, so we know how to handle it. Of course you want to enjoy the atmosphere, but not too much. You need to stay focused on the game. If you get too carried away by things you can get sent off, lose your control and your nerves. So just control yourself and play your game and just stay focused.”
In terms of Van Gaal’s philosophy and adapting to life at United, Shneiderlin said:
“It’s just the start of the season, so there is a new philosophy, so I will need that time.
“My team-mates, how they play, how they move and what the manger wants from me. I will need more time to feel perfect on the pitch. I cannot wait. There will be no problem in a few weeks.
“I know there is a lot of expectation, but there must be in this type of club. I cannot wait to play my best game and win titles for this club.”