Park Ji-Sung – Sir Alex’s man for the big occasion

He may struggle to speak a word of English but Park Ji-Sung has never even shown an inkling of disappointment throughout his Manchester United career. Why would he? Similarly to Darren Fletcher, Park must be one of the first names on the team-sheet when it comes to important games. Would you really complain if you were on the bench for a game against West Ham but played at the San Siro and in the Carling Cup final? I doubt it.

Park is certainly one of Ferguson’s favourites. He is a tireless worker and rarely gives the ball away, sometimes even popping up with the odd crucial goal. One thing that must be going through the South Korean’s head is, if Ferguson is using him for all of the important games, then why is he not using him for all games?

One thing is, while Rooney leads the line on his own and the defensive struggle with injuries, United have a midfield that is full of talent. In fact, United have 10 midfielders who have featured in more than five games this season. Park is one of many very talented players who all appreciate the need for rotation. Apart from Nani and Anderson, I don’t recall any player complaining about the way in which Ferguson deals with his large squad. The point being, United’s players appreciate the club they play for. They are well aware of their place and do not complain about being left out.

The same could be said about Park. While he is seen as being Ferguson’s Champions League man, he is more of a player who Sir Alex likes to use in away games. For example, the away game against Milan. Ferguson will have been happy with a draw in that game and, with Nani on the other wing; he knew that he could not send his team out to attack from the start. With Park, Ferguson has a more conservative approach. A similar tactic used away at The Emirates and in the Carling Cup final. If United were approaching the last 25 minutes needing a goal, I’m fairly sure it would have been Park who came off in return for a more attack minded player.

The example of the South Korean is one that could be used for the whole United midfield. While boasting a number of world class players, Ferguson has mastered the trick of being able to use them accordingly and more importantly, without causing unrest. Credit to him but also credit to the players for showing how proud they are to be playing for one of the greatest club’s in the history of football.