As a player he won five Premier League titles and the Champions League, as well as picking up 34 caps for England. But in his new autobiography, "Between the Lines" -- the profits of which will go to the Michael Carrick foundation -- the 37-year-old has revealed things did not always go as smoothly off the pitch, opening up about his battle with depression following the 2009 Champions League final defeat to Barcelona in Rome.
In an interview with ESPN FC, Carrick talks about his new book, the ups and down of his career, and how he is learning for a future career as a manager.
Q. You grew up in Newcastle and started your career at West Ham, but Manchester United seems to run all the way through the book...
A. When I was doing the book I'd remember little things and I'd think 'that was United actually and that was United as well.' I was a youth team player cleaning the away team dressing room and I remember Sir Alex walking down the corridor with his blazer on and the crest. I was in awe, trying to take it all in wide-eyed when I was a 16-, 17-, 18-year-old. I had no ties to United. In Newcastle, people don't support Man United you know! It's Newcastle and you hate the rest. I certainly wasn't a fan at all. That's obviously changed in time, but strangely there was always that snippet that seemed to be United, United, United.Q. What's Gary Neville going to say when he finds out you had a Liverpool shirt as a kid?
A. I think there could be a few people surprised at that one! That's the beauty of growing up as a kid supporting football. You just follow whatever you're going to follow. You look back and think 'how does that work?' That's the innocence of being a kid I think.
Q. Can you pinpoint the moment you believed you might make it?
A. Not really until I came to United that I thought about winning things. The 2006 World Cup was the summer I came to United so the England thing was kind of ongoing. Getting to the World Cup was massive but it wasn't until I got to United that I had that feeling that winning was a possibility. At Tottenham we might have had a good cup run but we weren't actually thinking 'we can win this.' It was about how far we could go or 'could we get into the Champions League?' That changed dramatically for me when I came to Old Trafford and seeing what was kind of expected here and the approach of the lads and the manager. It was just a different level completely.
Q. What was the most enjoyable part of your career to re-tell?
A. Not so much the obvious: like talking about Moscow [winning the Champions League in 2008]. Maybe the feeling of winning the FA Cup final [in 2016]. Finally winning that and having the kids there with me celebrating. The party afterwards and having all my family there at a time when I knew I was coming towards the end, thinking that might have been the last trophy I won. That was a special moment, a special night for me.
Not necessarily the game; the game is irrelevant, it's just the fact you've won it and the memories after that. Seeing how much it meant to the kids is probably the overwhelming memory I take from it. You might think it was the game or walking out at Wembley, Jesse's [Lingard] goal -- but that's not the main thing that sticks in my mind.
Q. You seem to mention the bad games as much as you do the good ones even though there weren't that many.
A. It's the bad ones that stick with me. That's something that I've learned over the years from speaking to other lads, it's the ones that haven't worked out that really keep hold of you and niggle away at you. You can't shake it.
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