Hernandez ready to swap goals for trophies

Javier Hernandez admits his impressive first season at Manchester United won't be a success unless he finishes the campaign with trophies to celebrate.

Updated: April 25, 2011 09:33 IST
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London: Javier Hernandez admits his impressive first season at Manchester United won't be a success unless he finishes the campaign with trophies to celebrate.

Hernandez has proved himself one of the buys of the season as the Mexican's 19 goals have kept United on course for glory in the Premier League and Champions League.

The 22-year-old arrived at Old Trafford from Chivas Guadalajara last year as a relative unknown, but he has quickly become a key figure for United boss Sir Alex Ferguson and emphasised his growing importance with the late winner against Everton on Saturday.

Hernandez was in the right place at the right time to head in Antonio Valencia's cross and his latest match-winning heroics ensured United would remain six points clear at the top of the Premier League.

Yet for all the praise thrown Hernandez's way in the last eight months, he is adamant only finishing up with a medal or two will be enough to satisfy him.

"We needed those three points, it didn't matter who scored," he said.

"We always think about the team. That is the most important thing. We don't need to be selfish and think only about scoring ourselves."

"This season has been a dream come true for me. I have scored 19 goals and we have almost won the Premier League. It is an unbelievable thing."

"But if I had the chance to swap my 19 goals for a lot of championships for this team, I would do it."

Hernandez admitted United's players were showing a few signs of nerves as they struggled to break down an obdurate Everton defence on Saturday, but he believes the club will always make a habit of winning in dramatic circumstances.

"It was nervous on the field. We wanted to get the goal as soon as possible and knew we needed to keep working," he said.

"It was hot and sunny and it was hard, but the history of Manchester United is about days like this."

Now Hernandez has a nervous wait to discover if he will be selected for the Champions League semi-final first leg against Schalke in Germany on Tuesday.

United captain Nemanja Vidic and South Korean midfielder Park Ji-sung did not even make the bench, while Ryan Giggs, Michael Carrick and Patrice Evra were among the substitutes against Everton.

Jonny Evans, one of the United understudies who came in on Saturday, admitted he was surprised to see Ferguson had made so many changes.

"The manager made an awful lot of changes, including myself, and there were people who had not played for a while," Evans said.

"It was a big gamble. I am sure some people thought that when they looked at the team sheet. But that is what the manager does and it has paid off."

That it did so was down to Hernandez. Northern Ireland defender Evans ranks Hernandez as the buy of the season and he said: "You could say that because of the number of important goals he has scored for us.

"We got to see little glimpses of him during the World Cup and you could see he had pace, but no-one knew much about him.

"He reminds me of an old-fashioned type centre-forward. People don't realise he is quite a strong lad with a great jump. Also, he knows where the goal is."

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