Ander Herrera keen to be an important part of the Manchester United legacy

Manchester United Old Trafford 2

Spanish midfielder Ander Herrera has enjoyed his first season with Manchester United, feeling proud to be a part of such a historic club in English football.

Adapting quickly to life in England and the Premier League, there's no doubting that Spanish midfielder Ander Herrera has enjoyed an impressive first season with Manchester United, following his blockbuster move from Athletic Club Bilbao last summer.

Back home on holiday in Spain and speaking with Elite Sports magazine, the 25-year-old has no regrets about moving to Old Trafford, explaining: "I'm really happy in Manchester. It's a great city and a really exciting club. Obviously I miss my friends and family sometimes, but that's why when I return to Spain, I spend as much time as I can with them."

Recalling when the opportunity arose to sign for the Red Devils last summer, Herrera admits: "I joined Manchester United because they're a fantastic club, who actually have an exciting long-term plan, and I want to be a part of that."

"Moving to United was a great step in my career and I knew there would be many challenges ahead, something which motivates me, both as a player and a person." He added, highlighting the ambition that drives him to succeed.

Clearly confident about his long-term future with Manchester United, Herrera explained: "I signed a contract for a number of seasons and I've only really got started. My desire is to be and important player for the club. I'm not thinking about anything other than triumphing with United."

Reflecting on the 2014-15 campaign in the Premier League, which saw United clinch 4th spot and a return to the Champions League, Herrera noted: "It's been a complicated season for the club. We could say that it's been one of transition, because we started out with a new manager and lots of new players."

However, he remains positive for the future and of United winning silverware, pointing out: "We've still got lots of work ahead of us at a group level, but I think we've shown examples that we can be competitive."

Whilst admitting that his first love will always be the club where he started his career, Real Zaragoza, Herrera is also hugely grateful for the opportunity to have played for hometown club, Athletic Club Bilbao, plus his chance to play for Manchester United.

"I love football and I've been fortunate enough to play for Athletic Club Bilbao and Manchester United. Both are unique and very important in this world. They share unique traditions, incredible fans and the desire to play good football. I feel I'm a very fortunate person." He enthused.

As for the unique factor of his former club only utilising Basque players, Herrera insisted: "The philosophy of Athletic is unique in the world of football and shouldn't ever be changed, because it makes them a special club."

Some football pundits have compared Herrera to Manchester United and England midfield legend, Paul Scholes. Clearly whilst that could be seen as a huge pressure on the shoulders of the talented Spaniard, in his own view: "The only pressure I feel is that which I put on myself. I'm very demanding of myself."

Herrera has also enjoyed working with very demanding former coaches, Marcelo Bielsa and Ernesto Valverde at Athletic, along with Louis van Gaal at Manchester United, feeling he's learned a great deal from all three.

"The three share qualities that makes them great coaches, whilst at the same time, all three are unique. I've tried to learn as much as I possibly can from all my managers, and the team-mates I've had around me."

"I feel very fortunate to have worked with great coaches like these. All three are attacking minded coaches, who like their teams to be the protagonists, who never speculate, which suits my footballing qualities." The midfielder highlighted.

The history of Manchester United isn't lost on Herrera either, especially the impact and legacy of former manager, Sir Alex Ferguson, who he regards as a living legend.

"He changed the history of this club, made this the biggest team in England, and one of the biggest in the world. Sir Alex is one of the most important managers in the history of English football."

Herrera continued his praise for the Scotsman, believing there will be none other like him: "Few can achieve what he did. He spent 27 years coaching United and won 38 titles. That's incredible!"

As for whether the success of Ferguson leaves too much of a shadow, Herrera assured: "His legacy will always remain at this club, but that's something positive, not negative. He's a legend and an example for everyone."

Despite excellent displays for Manchester United in his first season at the club, Herrera remains out of Spain manager Vicente del Bosque's national team plans. He doesn't see that as a particular obstacle though, knowing that a chance with La Roja must surely come. An opportunity he would be tremendously proud of.

"I've played in the junior levels for Spain already. It would be an honour to play at the highest level for Spain, as they have a group of players who have given us so much, with moments that have made football history." He suggested with optimism.

Entirely positive views from a player who has delighted Manchester United fans throughout the 2014-15 season. They'll certainly be hoping Herrera can keep producing strong performances, so that the Old Trafford 'Theatre of Dreams' can once more celebrate domestic and continental triumphs.

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