Thursday 21 September 2017

John O'Shea reveals his biggest regret from his Manchester United career

John O'Shea left Manchester United for Sunderland in 2011. Photo: Getty Images
John O'Shea left Manchester United for Sunderland in 2011. Photo: Getty Images
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

John O’Shea has admitted he has huge regrets over his decision to leave Manchester United in 2011, even though he still had a year left on his contract with the Old Trafford club.

Republic of Ireland defender O’Shea won five Premier League titles and the Champions League during his 12-year stint at United, before he accepted an offer to move to Sunderland.

Now O’Shea has confessed he wishes he had extended his stay at United by at least one more year, as he swapped the challenge of winning major trophies for a succession of battles against relegation during his time with Sunderland.

O’Shea will make a return to Old Trafford on St Stephen’s Day as Sunderland take on in-form United and he has opened up on his decision to walk away from the club where he made his name.

“Should I have stayed at United longer? Yes. I have thought that a few times,” stated O’Shea.

“I had a year left on my contract and we always said over the years that I could leave if the manager thought I wasn’t going to get enough football to keep me happy.

“At the time I thought I was going to guarantee myself a lot more football if I went away from United, but it wasn’t an easy decision, that’s for sure.”

O’Shea is relishing the chance to return to Old Trafford and at the age of 35, he is aiming to ensure he has a few more outings at the Theatre of Dreams before he hangs up his boots.

“I hope it won’t be my last trip there,” he added. “I’m fit and well and want to play on. Thankfully throughout my career I’ve rarely had to have a long spell out or had major operations.

“I’m looking to play as long as possible. I was fairly confident when I left United that I would still be playing now because of the way I have looked after myself and done the right things through my career.”

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