Lee Sharpe in Dubai

We meet 40-year-old former Manchester United star Discuss this article

leesharpe0124_1
© ITP Images

So what do you make of Dubai?
It’s rubbish isn’t it? [Laughs] It’s just different… life has its pros and cons. It’s harder to stay in at night! I’ve told people this is part holiday and part work. I’m playing a lot of golf.

Where have you been spending your evenings?
The Stables – I’ve been there every night for the past three weeks. I was there until 3.10am last night. It’s a brilliant place. Horizon Lounge and 360° are nice as well.

Are you keeping an eye on the Premier League back home?
It’s all to play for – no one wants to take the opportunity to run away with it. Manchester United know how to win, they’ve been there many times. Alex Ferguson’s teams know how to deal with the nerves and have the experience.

Do you think Sir Alex is the best manager ever?
It’s hard to argue with. He was hard to play for. Off the field he was lovely, he looked after you, but he was a hard taskmaster and a workaholic. He knows his stuff and knows the game inside out.

How does 41-year-old Ryan Giggs, who still plays for United, manage to keep it up?
Ice baths and yoga! And having seven per cent body fat helps as well. I didn’t do any yoga in my time, that’s for sure.

What does it feel like scoring a goal?
When you score, the stadium just goes wild, and for 20 or 30 seconds you just forget where you are. The roar of 50,000 people makes the hair on the back of your neck just stand up. It’s indescribable. Nothing can touch it. People chase that energy and that excitement.

After appearing on Celebrity Love Island and Dancing on Ice in the UK, do you fancy a return to reality TV?
I’d like to do the dancing. I said no to Celebrity Big Brother – I don’t really like that show. People are trying to put the feelers out for me for Strictly Come Dancing – I’d like to do it, although I’m happy out here for now. When I did Dancing on Ice it was hard graft, but I’ve not been on the ice since.

Are you still in contact with (former girlfriend and model) Abi Titmuss?
Abi was great fun and lovely, but I’m not a blonde man – I’m more of a brunette man. Abi was cool; great fun, dead hot and really funny. I still hear from her now and again. But if she was the hottest woman I’d dated, I’d still be with her. I’m still interviewing, I’m still at the office. I’m more of a lads’ lad. I like women too, but they’re too much like hard work.

When you were at United, the shirts were sponsored by electronics firm Sharp. Were you ever tempted to stick an ‘E’ on the end?
I was a running joke; the only player who had his name on both the front and back of his jersey. If I’d thought about doing something like that the manager would have been furious – even if it was a joke.
Lee Sharpe appears as a guest on Coast 103.2’s Friday Football show, which will be broadcast live from the West Beach Bistro at the Mövenpick JBR at 11am on February 3.

By Rob Garratt
Time Out Dubai,

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