Date: 28th April 2008 at 7:10pm
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Though I stated I thought we had little chance without Rooney, I also think we must trust the players as Fergie says he does.

United prepare for the Champions League semi-final against Barcelona and Sir Alex praised his players before the biggest game of the season.

“The first thing is I trust these players,” he said.

“I`m happy for them to represent Manchester United in any shape or form, in any game.

“I think I`m a lucky manager to have such good lads. Character-wise, they`re fantastic. You saw that in the second half against Chelsea when they were absolutely magnificent.

“Silvestre has only had one game in nine months, Fletcher had been out for several weeks. That character is a part of Manchester United. It epitomises the kind of player who needs to play for Manchester United and I`m absolutely proud of the players who`ll be representing me and the club tomorrow night.”


He’s absolutely right about Silvestre and Fletcher – hopefully the rest will be as up to the task as they were at Stamford Bridge.

And it’s true that we must trust these players. We have little choice, to begin with but also because they’ve proved they can win against anyone. And it’s time for fortune to favour us because, as Fergie has said, we were terribly unfortunate on other occasions in the Champions League.

“If you go back to semi-finals in the past and the times we`ve lost, sometimes we`ve been unlucky – like against Dortmund and Leverkusen. Maybe if we`d been fresher for the semi-final against AC Milan, it would have been different. But we weren`t good enough on the night, Milan were much better prepared than us.

“So there have been mixed fortunes in that respect. Of course, we had that sensational victory against Juventus the year we won it. I think we have a marvellous chance. We`re asking the players to win a game of football.”


They’re good at that – but not in recent weeks. Our wobble is very much there though it’s true that going to Ewood Park, Nou Camp and Stamford Bridge in the space of a week was never going to be enjoyable. At Old Trafford, it’s very much our turn to show what we are capable of. And I very much hope that that is more than what we’ve been showing recently.