Queens Park Rangers will visit Old Trafford this Saturday and that means the return of Park Ji-sung. Perhaps fortunately for me, because I don't if I can stomach the sight of him lining up against Manchester United, the Korean -- who is now QPR's captain* -- won't be playing due to a knee injury. He will be in the stands though.
* Anything must be an upgrade on Joey Barton.
Park was one of Sir Alex Ferguson's more astute signings -- just £4 million from PSV Eindhoven in the summer of 2005 -- as he spent seven glorious seasons at the 'Theatre of Dreams'. During that time, he collected medals for winning the Premier League four times, the UEFA Champions League once, the League Cup thrice, and the FIFA World Cup once. The energetic midfielder was a huge success at United and he became much more than just a shirt seller. Ferguson's continual selection of Park for big games is indicative of the trust he had in him and the manager has praised his former player ahead of this upcoming weekend's match:
"The great thing about Ji-sung Park is he's one of the best professionals we've had here. He was truly fantastic, and particularly in big games. I loved playing him in the big games. His record against Arsenal, for instance, was fantastic. The Milan games over there and at Old Trafford, when I asked Park to play directly against [Andrea] Pirlo, are memorable. He never gave Pirlo a kick and he kept running off him which was brilliant too. Park had roles that only a disciplined and selfless player could have. That’s exactly what Ji-sung was, selfless. He played for the team and whatever role you gave him, he would stick to that role. So he was a really wonderful, disciplined professional for us."
- Ferguson | Source: ManUtd.com
You are missed Ji. You are treasured by United fans. Hopefully you get the reception you deserve on Saturday (the cameras better pan to him in the Old Trafford stands).