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Friday, March 14, 2008

Derby County Highlights Video Clip

The video clip is about Manchester United opposition for March 15, 2008; Derby County Highlights. Hope Red Devils can beat them. Pretty sure our boys will do that.


Nev is Bolt-in'

Gary Neville has targeted a Premier League return against Bolton next Wednesday - a year and two days after his injury nightmare began against the same opponents! The Manchester United captain, sidelined since suffering a calf injury in the 4-1 win against Wanderers last March, has proved his fitness with a series of reserve outings recently. Neville, 33, could even be set for a recall to the squad for the trip to bottom club Derby tomorrow.
Mark Ogden, Daily Star

Scholes keeps an eye on rivals

Paul Scholes insists it’s imperative the Reds stay focused on themselves, but he admits it's difficult not to mull over potential pitfalls in the fixture list or watch United’s title rivals willing them to stumble.

Like Ryan Giggs and Edwin van der Sar, the 33-year-old has invaluable know-how at this stage of the season. With just two points separating United and league leaders Arsenal (Bolton on Wednesday is the Reds' game in hand) and Chelsea chasing hard in third, Scholes says it’s impossible not to follow every twist and turn.

“Whether or not it's right to do, you look at games coming up,” he told Red View, United's official email newsletter. “You have to focus on one game at a time, but you do tend to look ahead. You watch opponents’ matches, too.

"That’s the nature of being in a title race. It’s that time of the season where you watch every game hoping your rival drops points.”

Scholes watched anxiously, like most fans, as Arsenal struggled against the grit of Wigan, and the mud of the JJB Stadium turf.

“That was a really good result for us," he said. "The pitch was horrendous and Arsenal had just had a really tough game in Milan, but we have to be pleased with the outcome.”

Derby, United’s opponents on Saturday, are in an irrecoverable position at the foot of the table. But Scholes says there can be no let-up, regardless of the Rams' plight. “We’ve got the experience to know we must do the business. If we do that, we’ve got a great chance to win the league.” Read more...

Foster handed Reds debut

Ben Foster will face Derby on Saturday as injury to Edwin van der Sar and a one-match suspension for Tomasz Kuszczak force Sir Alex Ferguson into giving the promising young goalkeeper his Reds debut ahead of schedule.

Van der Sar has failed to recover from a groin strain picked up in the FA Cup defeat to Portsmouth, while Kuszczak's red card in the clash sees him sit out the trip to Pride Park.

Foster, who had been tipped to go out on loan for the rest of the season, made a successsful return to action last week for the Reserves having spent the last eight months on the sidelines recovering from knee ligament damage.

"Edwin misses the game, so it's a debut for Ben Foster," said Sir Alex. "I had planned to send him out on loan. But Edwin is injured and Tomasz Kuszczak is suspended.

"Having been out for the best part of a year and with only one reserves game behind him, it's a big challenge for Ben. But I have no fears. He will be OK. What encourages me is that he has got fantastic presence, speed and agility.

"His rehabilitation went completely as planned and he's been in full training for about a month so there are no question marks over his fitness. What we can't tell is how match sharp he is. He's only had one game. But his assets give me confidence he'll do well."

It has taken the 24-year-old almost three years to get a shot at his United debut. After arriving at Old Trafford in the summer of 2005 from Stoke City, he was immediately farmed out to Watford for two seasons. He excelled there, eventually earning his first England cap.

Foster's lengthy loan spell away from the club and his subsequent injury have prevented him from playing a single competitive game for the Reds, until now.

Sir Alex should also be able to call on Louis Saha against Derby County.

The Frenchman was pencilled in to start against Portsmouth last week, but he pulled up in the warm-up for United's FA Cup tie last weekend with a knee complaint.

But the Reds boss will hope to have the powerful forward at his disposal. He added: "Louis trained on Thursday and if he comes through training on Friday then he will be involved against Derby." Read more...

United to face Roma

United have been paired with AS Roma in the Champions League quarter finals - meaning the two sides will have met six times in 12 months.

It's the second time this season that United have been pitted against the Italians, having met in the group stages. And it's the second time in two seasons that the Giallorossi stand in Sir Alex Ferguson's way at the quarter final stage.

The Reds boss will be pleased his side are away in the first leg on Tuesday 1 April, with Luciano Spalletti bringing his men to Old Trafford for the return fixture on Wednesday 9 April.

The semi final draw was also made in Nyon on Friday. Should United get past Roma, the Reds will be away in the first leg of the last four, against either Schalke or Barcelona. The semi final first leg will be played on Wednesday 23 April, the return on Tuesday 29 April.

It means United cannot play Premier League opposition before the final in Moscow, while the winner of Arsenal and Liverpool's all-English quarter final will face either Fenerbahce or Chelsea.

Full Draw
Arsenal v Liverpool
Roma v Manchester United
Schalke v Barcelona
Fenerbahce v Chelsea

Sir Alex eyes intriguing tie

Sir Alex Ferguson was convinced that United would draw a familiar face in the Champions League quarter finals, but he hadn't reckoned it being AS Roma, whom the Reds have met four times in the last year.

The Reds boss was sure his side would be paired with an English opponent. In actual fact, United cannot now not meet Premier League opposition until the final.

"It’s incredible," Sir Alex told after the draw. "I had a strong feeling that we would draw an English side.

"It’s amazing to think that we will have played Roma six times in a year. That makes it an intriguing tie because we know a lot about Roma, but they know a lot about us."

United are keen to avoid a repeat of the off-the- field trouble that marred the Reds' visit to Rome at this stage of last season's competition. However, Sir Alex is confident that will be the case.

"Away from the football, obviously my biggest concern is the fans," he said. "During the game in Rome this season the security was much improved. But there will be even more fans travelling with us for this match. That said, I have a feeling it will be another great European tie."

Roma coach Luciano Spalletti met news of the draw with caution, but admits his side have a chance to avenge their 7-1 mauling in last season's quarter-final second leg.

“They will be very tough opponents,” he said. “Everyone here seemed to be shocked at the draw. We carry the 7-1 defeat with us and it has helped us to mature. This is a chance to put things right. They may be the stronger side, but I would say that we have a 50 per cent chance of getting through.” Read more...