When Usain Bolt appeared in this YouTube video last month showing off his soccer skills and expressing his desire to play on his favorite soccer team, Manchester United, most assumed the Jamaican sprinter was merely kidding around.
But this week, the 2012 Olympic 100-meter champion told British newspaper the Sun that he's serious about his soccer ambitions.
"People think I am joking, but if Alex Ferguson called me up and said, 'OK let's do this, come and have a trial,' it would be impossible for me to say no," Bolt said, referring to Manchester United's long-time manager.
"I would not take up the challenge if I didn't think I was good enough. I am a very accomplished player and know I could make a difference."
It seems that at least one player on the English Premier League squad agrees with the four-time Olympic gold medalist, ESPN notes.
On Tuesday, Manchester United's Rio Ferdinand sent a tweet of support to the track star.
@usainbolt if you want that trial at Man Utd shout me, I'll speak to the boss!! Well done in 100m, waiting for you to smash the 200m now!
— Rio Ferdinand (@rioferdy5) August 7, 2012
In response to the English soccer player, Bolt tweeted:
After the Olympics we work on that...lol..thanks man
— Usain St. Leo Bolt (@usainbolt) August 7, 2012
Bolt has been chummy with the Manchester United soccer squad since 2009, when the sprinter visited the team in Manchester.
In this 2009 photograph, Bolt is seen with Manchester United manager, Alex Ferguson (Credit: Getty Images)
On Sunday, Bolt broke the 100-meter Olympic record, clinching the gold medal with a time of 9.63 seconds. He has also advanced to the 200-meter semifinals, winning his heat with a qualifying time of 20.39.
Bolt has said in the past that he may retire from sprinting after the 2012 London Games. In a 2010 interview with the Guardian, the athlete said he may try the 400-meter and the long jump.
But if the speedy sprinter gets offered a spot on his dream soccer team, it seems his plans might very well change.
"I am in Britain for a few more days. If Alex Ferguson wants to give me a call, he knows where I am," Bolt told the Sun.