Arsenal will want revenge warns Manchester United midfielder Michael Carrick


Click to follow
The Independent Football

Michael Carrick admits revenge may be Arsenal's prime motivation when they face Manchester United on Sunday.

The Barclays Premier League giants meet at the Emirates Stadium for the first time since that astonishing 8-2 triumph for United in August.

And the sheer magnitude of that scoreline may be a factor in the Gunners' approach.

"Maybe," said Carrick when asked if Arsenal would be out for revenge. "They didn't start the season too well but they are still up there.

"Arsenal against Manchester United is always a massive game. They will want to win and so will we."

It is not so much a case of the Red Devils wanting to win. By the time they kick-off, it might be a clear case of having to.

If Manchester City overcome Tottenham in the other title crunch taking place on Sunday, United will be six points adrift of a team that will only get stronger once Yaya and Kolo Toure return from African Nations Cup duty with the Ivory Coast.


Speaking in an exclusive interview on the Betfair Facebook page, Carrick said: "Manchester City have done well. You have to give them credit. They set an early pace, had a funny Christmas period, and have now bounced back.

"It's close at the moment, so we want to catch up with them.

"The bar has been raised this year."

It is a challenge United manager Sir Alex Ferguson will relish.

Now 70, Ferguson claims to have mellowed over the years, a stance the likes of Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville agree with.

However, the Scot's temper can quickly boil over if he feels his team are not reaching the performance levels he demands.

And Nani, on his day a world-class talent but infuriatingly inconsistent, knows he irritates his boss more than most.

"I get it a lot, it's normal," the Portuguese winger said.

"He expects more from me, so sometimes he comes to me and says something."

Not that it means Nani respects Ferguson any less.

After almost 40 years as a manager, 25 of which have been spent at United, the former Sporting Lisbon player knows the Scot is the master of man-management.

"No one understands it like Alex Ferguson," he said.

"Everyone knows him in Portugal, and talk a lot talk about him.

"Everyone knows the way he works is fantastic and the young lads improve a lot."