Rafael da Silva has had nothing short of a fantastic season for Manchester United. The Brazilian right back has noticed his own progression, claiming 2012 will be a year to remember.
While finishing the 2011/12 campaign trophyless, it’s arguably been Rafael’s best year in a Red shirt. The 22-year-old has established himself as a first team regular with a number of impressive performances.
Rafael has started more games than anyone else this term. The fact he’s getting more game time nowadays suggests that the full back has added consistency in his game. Something that has been an issue since his arrival at Old Trafford.
Speaking to ManUtd.com, he said: “It’s been a great year for me.
“I feel like I have grown up a lot and that I am maturing – my daughter was born this year which has helped me a lot too. And on the pitch I have been able to play a lot of games. So I’ve had a lot of good moments not just in football but in life this year.
“Playing games week in, week out helps you feel more comfortable and confident on the pitch and I’m pleased I’ve been able to do that this season.
“I feel more experienced and like I am growing as a player and a person. I was only 18 when I first came here, I was just a boy. Some people may think I am still young and still a boy but now I feel like I am a man.”
It’s been a pleasure watching Rafael develop into the player we all knew he could become, but there’s more work to do with plenty of room for improvement. As we come to the end of 2012, another door opens. And Rafael wants to add trophies to his form in 2013.
“My target for 2013 is like every player – we want to win trophies,” Rafael added. “When you’re at this club that has to be your focus, we all want to win. And personally I want to play as many games as I can and be consistent in my performances.
“When you get into January you know the really important time in the season is not far away and there will be big game after big game. Of course, every game is important but after Christmas they become massive matches. Hopefully we can do well.”