Kagawa relishes spotlight


Soccer:Shinji Kagawa is confident he has the mental strength to cope with the attention of being Japan’s first Manchester United player. Kagawa attended his first United media event at Old Trafford yesterday when it quickly became obvious what an attraction he is going to be.

The amount of Japanese media in attendance dwarfed the number of Korean counterparts who used to follow Park Ji-sung around during his time at Old Trafford. Those numbers will swell still further once the new Premier League campaign starts in August.

But the midfielder, signed from Borussia Dortmund, does not view it as a problem. “I definitely feel the attention of the media globally now I am a member of a great squad like Manchester United,” said Kagawa, who has pledged to learn the language quickly.

“Everything here at the club shows me I have come somewhere really big. But I think I can take the pressure. I am pretty confident I can adapt to the style of the Premier League.”

Kagawa will be the star attraction on the early part of United’s pre-season tour, which begins on Monday with a flight to Durban for the first of two games in South Africa.

Ferguson is keen to make at least one further addition, having also completed the signing of 18-year-old Nick Powell from Crewe. “When the European Championships or the World Cup is on, there is always a delay in the transfer industry. Now all that is over we are still trying to get maybe one player in.”

Leighton Baines was the name that immediately sprang to mind given how heavily the Everton defender has been linked with United this summer. However, the club’s recent transfer history does not indicate the amount they would have to pay for Baines would be invested in a second-choice left-back, which would place a question mark over the future of Patrice Evra.

Ferguson refused the opportunity to reveal even which position he was looking at, just as a Red Devils official quickly moved on from potential questioning over that IPO, which is intended for launch in the United States in the coming weeks.

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