Bardsley relishes chance
Phil Bardsley has revealed he joined Sunderland because he has longed for the opportunity to play under the guidance of manager Roy Keane.
By Amanda Cornforth
Last Updated: 23/01/08 5:22pm
New Sunderland signing Phil Bardsley has revealed he joined the club because he has longed for the opportunity to play under the guidance of manager Roy Keane.
The 22-year-old defender switched from Manchester United on Tuesday when former Old Trafford legend Keane showed an interest in him for the second time in a year.
Bardsley, who witnessed Keane during his playing days at United, believes the boss will get the best out of him as a player and he had no doubts in accepting his offer to move to the Stadium of Light.
"I wanted to play in the Premier League and I have always wanted to have the chance of having Roy Keane as my manager. It's a great chance for me," Bardsley said.
"As a player at Man United , he always got the best out of you, no matter whether it was training, games, everything.
"I am sure he can get the best out of me as a manager. He's got a reputation as a winner, that's the kind of person he is.
"I just look forward to being part of that and I want to win stuff."
Bardsley is the Black Cats' third January signing following loanee Jonny Evans and Jean-Yves Mvoto after he penned a three-and-a-half year deal that could eventually amount to £2million.
He has previously played alongside fellow Sunderland team-mates Paul McShane and Kieran Richardson, who also appeared in the United side that won the FA Youth Cup in 2003.
Now Bardsley is ready to fight for a regular first team place at Sunderland having learnt his trade, as so many of Keane's signings have, under Sir Alex Ferguson.
He has been signed as a right-back, a position which has caused Keane somewhat of a headache during his time in charge on Wearside.
"I played in a couple of Champions League games and a couple of Premier League games, but sometimes you need more than that," he added.
"When I had chances to go out on loan to Rangers, Villa and Sheffield United, it was a great chance for me to go and play every week.
"I am just looking to prove myself, really, and to be a valuable member of the squad.
"I would hope I have got a job to do at right-back, but we have got a big squad, so everyone's looking to cement their place in the team."