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Resilience and Substance Needed

Resilience and Substance Needed

Sir Alex has called for the current team to show the resilience and substance of past sides as they face Lille on Wednesday.

Refusing to comment on the reports that Roy Keane has criticised teammates, Ferguson focused soley on the task in hand - beating Lille on Wednesday and wiping away the memory of Boro's 4-1 win.

'I've got nothing to say about it all (Keane), we're preparing for a game tomorrow.

'That's our stance on it. It's a very important match for us, we're going to need all our concentration and preparation to make sure we get the result we want. So there we are.

'I think the nature of our club, it's probably in the make up and history of it, that we generally do that. But we don't think we should be taking it for granted.

'First of all, we have to set the tone for a match like tomorrow. Work ethic comes into it usually and other things we'll prepare on but it's happened in the past, something that will stop us in our tracks and we are conscious of the need to win.'

'I dont think's the pressure of managing at our club is any different to 19 years ago, the need to win has always been there.

'No, morale is not a problem. I don't think so.

'When you lose a game, everyone is disappointed. It's always the case for every footballer to do some soul-searching when you have a bad match or bad result. I don't think our players are different to anyone else.

'They have their pride and wouldn't be playing here if they didn't have their pride. Probably through to Sunday, they're the same as myself - analysing every kick of the ball, watching the video, thinking about it again. That's what you do when you lose, you don't take it lightly.

'The most important thing is for players to go out and enjoy it tomorrow. It's still the greatest stage of all. We've based a lot of our history on European football althogh we've only won it twice. We've had some fantastic campaigns over the years and want to win it more. There's a desire within the club.

'I think I will be trying to get the enjoyment part. Playing football, when we started as kids, was about enjoying ourselves. It should never leave you - the ability to express yourself comes into it and I think all good players can do that. Tomorrow, I hope you see the Manchester United we know.'

'Suffering defeats like Saturday is a big step for a lot of them because they're young. Over the years, we've depended on experienced players in the dressing room - Steve Bruce, Bryan Robson. They played a great part in the dressing room, plus myself and the coaches. Part of that is done by preparation at youth level in the sense of preparing to play on a stage and never being afraid to take the ball and experience themselves.

'The experience they're having at the moment is good for them in the long run.

'We have a young squad, unfortunately our experienced players are injured at the moment. It's not the easiest to handle.

'We know that young players, what they do at our club, is learn. The learning process is usually good. There's no problem with ability.

'To go to the Stade de France tomorrow will not affect anything. Temperament wise, it's okay. They've got to pick up the resilience and substance of Manchester United teams in the past. We're asking young players who have only been at the club a year or so to do that.

'We're missing the support of experienced players like Gary Neville, Gabriel Heinze, Roy Keane and Quinton Fortune. It's a big miss that.'

Writer:
Date:Tuesday November 1 2005
Time: 4:02PM

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