Ander Herrera has opened up about his future at Manchester United, expressing a desire to continue winning trophies at Old Trafford after claiming the Europa League earlier this month.
The Spaniard has enjoyed his best campaign yet at Man United, making 50 appearances in total and deservedly claiming the Sir Matt Busby Player of the Season award as a result.
His renaissance under Jose Mourinho has not gone unnoticed: former Athletic Bilbao and newly appointed Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde has already made an unsuccessful attempt to sign the midfielder.
And Herrera, soon after rejecting a move to the Nou Camp, has made it clear that his attention is firmly on securing more silverware under Mourinho.
“I’m very thankful with Man United because they came to Spain to sign me three years ago,” he said.
“So the only thing I have in my mind every time I am on the pitch is I want to give all of the affection back and I think that’s the right way.
“I just try to go to the pitch and finish the game and I cannot complain to myself, I can say I have given everything.
“I don’t want to stop, I am very optimistic and a hard-working player and I want to keep playing, to keep working hard, to keep improving, not just personally but with the club, but with the team.
“I want to keep winning things, I am happy with my development, I am happy with my time at the club so far but I am not going to stop here, I want to keep playing, keep improving and making our fans proud.”
Whether posterity judges the 2016/17 season as Herrera’s zenith, or instead just the start of something bigger, is now entirely down to the 27-year-old himself.
The Spaniard, following two years of ambiguity, has now established himself as an indispensable asset in this current starting XI. But there is more work to be done: one season of brilliance is impressive, of course, but maintaining and building on the heights reached under Mourinho will feel like the hallmark of a future captain at Old Trafford.