''Cricket may be India’s number one sport, but football, especially when represented by English club Manchester United, is a close second'', says former player Quinton Fortune, who was in town celebrating his former club’s win in the 2010-11 Barclay’s Premier League season.
“Everyone in England wants to play for us. Our history and how much we’ve improved over the last 20 years is what makes us different.” Denis Irwin, who had a long and successful career playing for the Red Devils, offers his own reasoning for the club’s fan following, saying, “Man U has the right mix of young and experienced players, which is why they tend to perform so well.”
Ask the two footballers, who were brought to the country by their team’s official travel partners Thomas Cook, about their revered coach, Sir Alex Fergusson, and Fortune gushes, “He’s the kind who will make you work real hard and teach you the tricks of the game like nobody else can.”
Fortune and Irwin also dish out advice for amateurs looking to break into the big league: “You need to love the game wholeheartedly, listen to your coach and observe how each player performs.”
At the moment, the wildly popular team has tough competition in the form of Manchester City, which is currently at the top of the league. Ask what the former stalwarts make of the current state of affairs, and Fortune says, “City is a good team. They’re climbing up the ladder, but it will take them some time to reach where we are today.Of course, the game isn’t all hard work and no play. Footballers tend to get more than their fair share of women, given their reputation for being good-looking.''
Ask the former players who they consider the best catch on the circuit right now, and Fortune quips immediately, “Well, I think (striker Wayne) Rooney is quite sexy.”