The Opposition Are Up For This
Tonight's clash at Old Trafford is beginning to take shape and that's before a ball has even been kicked. This is what the red half of Manchester is saying...
Raise The Roof (official United site)
It may be down to Sir Alex and his players to get the job against Manchester City on Wednesday night, but there can be no underestimating the part the fans can play in helping the Reds reach Wembley.
United currently trail Roberto Mancini's side 2-1 despite dominating the Carling Cup semi-final first leg for long periods. With a place at Wembley up for grabs, as well as local pride, the Old Trafford faithful are being urged to get right behind the lads.
'I know for sure that our crowd will rise to the occasion,' insists Sir Alex in his United Review programme notes. 'I don't think I even have to ask the fans to turn up the volume. It will just happen.'
'The best thing the fans can do is make a big impact on the atmosphere which will raise the performance levels of the players,' says Reds' legend Bryan Robson in his column.'
Giggs - Roar Us To Wembley (official Rag site)
Ryan Giggs has called on the Old Trafford faithful to roar the Reds to Wembley as United gear up for the Carling Cup semi-final second leg clash with Manchester City.
Despite being outplayed for much of the first leg, Roberto Mancini's men bring a 2-1 advantage to M16 on Wednesday night.
Giggs feels a similar display from the Reds to that on show at Eastlands last week will turn the tie in United`s favour, but he insists the fans' support is equally important.
'They are going to play a massive part. It was a great atmosphere at Eastlands and our fans were absolutely brilliant. We need them to get behind us again because it really does make a difference,' he told ManUtd.com.
It's not often you play City in a night game - it'll be like a European match in some respects which is obviously something we're used to and something which we usually thrive on.
'It was a great game at Eastlands and although we didn't get the result we wanted if we perform like that again on Wednesday then we should be okay.
While players and fans alike will be keen to secure local bragging rights, Giggs says it`s important not to lose sight of the bigger picture.
'Of course, it`s a derby but it's also a cup semi-final with a place at Wembley at stake and a trophy at the end of it,' he added. 'We're the holders and we want to defend our trophy.'
Fergie Backs Red To Stay Cool (MUEN)
Sir Alex Ferguson believes his battle-hardened troops will be too much for City in tonight's clash at Old Trafford.
Although the Reds go into the second leg of the Carling Cup semi-final trailing 2-1, the United boss is confident the big-match experience of his players will prove the difference in what is set to be a powder-keg atmosphere.
The spat between Carlos Tevez and Gary Neville during and following the first leg, married with the growing tension between the two clubs after City's cheeky Welcome to Manchester poster, means it is set to be one of the biggest clashes in derby history. But United boss Sir Alex Ferguson insists his side knows how to handle the occasion.
'We have had feisty games, competitive games, against the likes of Leeds, Liverpool since I have been here and player behaviour has always been good,' he said.
'We have never had any issues in big games. I am not worried about. it. Look at the record.'
'It is going to be a fantastic game. Maybe even better than last week's and we are ready for it.'
The Blues money-no-object clout has transformed the derby atmosphere but Fergie isn't fired by motivation to ram the cash advantage back down City's throats.
'Tonight has nothing to do with anything other than it is a local derby and it is a semi-final,' he said.
'It doesn't matter if they had little money or whatever, it doesn't matter. It is a route to the final.
'That is a good incentive. We showed last week we want to be in the final.'
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