Ashley Young has revealed that he always had a move to Italy in the back of his mind, two months after quitting Manchester United.
Young had spent the best part of a decade at Man Utd, where he had become captain, before deciding to leave the club for Inter Milan in January.
The wing-back joined forces with former Chelsea manager Antonio Conte, looking to help inspire a title charge at Inter, where he found himself in rather different circumstances to the inconsistencies United had grown used to – even if his present side’s form has faltered slightly of late as well.
Young – who is the first Englishman to play for the Nerazzurri since Paul Ince – appears to have no regrets about the move, telling Inter’s official website: “I’ve always watched Italian games, since I was a child, it always intrigued me and I wondered if one day I’d have the opportunity to play in it, and now here I am.
“Experiencing this club day after day is incredible and I hope to contribute to its success. I think about the players who have worn this shirt and the trophies that this club has won and I’d love to be part of this club’s great history.
“My attitude is to take to the pitch and give 100% by putting myself at the service of the team and the coach, that’s what I’ve always done and what I want to keep doing.
“I remember when Paul Ince came to Inter, the fans loved him. The passion he showed on the pitch and his desire to win were incredible.”
During his time at United, Young oversaw a personal transition from being a winger to a full-back, and he credited that to the intuition of his coaches.
“I’ve been able to change and reinvent myself several times in my career, in part because I’ve had coaches who understood that I could cover different positions across the pitch,” he said.
Meanwhile, another veteran could make the opposite move, as reports indicate United are ready to go back in for Inter centre-back Diego Godin.
The former Atletico Madrid star has not been Conte’s favoured option this season, and he could be sent packing in the summer – with United ready to finally get their man after years of links.