Former Manchester City defender Joleon Lescott In Conversation with Rannvijay Singh
Joleon Lescott was an instrumental component in Manchester City's rise to prominence in the last decade. The 36-year-old made the move to the Etihad from Everton in August 2009 and, after initial struggles at the club, he became a mainstay in the backline under Roberto Mancini.
The Englishman collected a total of four trophies during his five-year stint in Manchester and lifted the Premier League title twice. During his time, Lescott also chipped in with some valuable goals and netted nine times in his Man City career.
Lescott arrived in India last month as a brand ambassador along with Paul Dickov for Manchester City's trophy tour of the Premier League title and the Carabao Cup in New Delhi and Mumbai following their record-breaking 2017/18 season. He took time out of his busy schedule and caught up with diehard City fan, actor and VJ Rannvijay Singh for a candid conversation.
Here are a few excerpts.
How did you prepare for Manchester United and what was the pressure like heading into the Manchester derby?
Obviously, any derby is special but due to the fact that we were genuine title contenders and they were the favourites, it just adds extra incentive, the football means more and the bragging rights always mean everything.
Family and friends now that don't realize that the 6-1 win was possibly the reason we won the league because we won it on goal difference and that five-goal swing is really 10 goals when you are playing.
What's happening with you guys on the field when the goals are pouring in?
You just kind of be respectful to a certain extent and always [stay] professional. You just want to score as many because you don't know what is going to happen and if we didn't net those goals then we wouldn't have won the league.
You just keep going when the opportunities come and we had the players to capitalise on them.
How did you prepare for both venues - Etihad Stadium and Old Trafford - for the Manchester derby?
The derbies were different since early in the season it was just: 'Are we serious title contenders?' and if we win that then United and the rest will take us more seriously in terms of winning the Premier League.
The return leg at the Etihad was like, 'We win the league if we win the Derby then we are in control,' and that was the only time the Chairman put pressure on us.
What happened when Sergio Aguero's last-gasp, title-winning goal went in against QPR?
Everything, everyone was just running around! I don't think anyone could get to anyone as it was that fast in that moment of time and it was like, "Lets just run as fast as we can in any direction!"
I see pictures of Joe Hart doing circles, everyone is obviously chasing Sergio [Aguero] and I'm not far from the dugout so I just literally run towards the staff and physios we work with day in and day out and literally jumped into five of them and it was like: "Just catch me 'cause this is going to hurt!"
Could you tell us about your current role with Manchester City?
I have got two roles; one as an ambassador - I travel around the world. But I also work with the younger generation of players that go out on loan who are not quite ready for the first team and I help mentor and develop them.