Carrick eager to get back to winning ways

Michael Carrick knows Manchester United need to hit the winning trail again once they manage to re-start their campaign.

After successive wins against Hull and Wigan immediately after Christmas, 2010 looked set to start on a positive note for Sir Alex Ferguson's team.

Instead, it all went calamitously wrong on Sunday when they were bundled out of the FA Cup by League One Leeds United at Old Trafford.

The postponement of tonight's Carling Cup semi-final with Manchester City at Eastlands has prevented the Red Devils giving the new year a belated kick start.

Providing the snow relents, Ferguson and his men will travel to Birmingham on Saturday to face Alex McLeish's in-form Blues.

And midfielder Carrick knows victory is essential.

"This season has been strange with some odd results," said the England star.

"But it is a vital time. The manager has stressed that to us.

"Although most of us have been here before he has told us how every game becomes more important."

The extra recovery time should mean Nemanja Vidic is available for the trip to St Andrew's after he tweaked a nerve in his leg during the warm-up for Sunday's defeat and opted to pull out.

That move only fuelled speculation about Vidic's future, even though the defender has always publicly stated his desire to remain at United.

Real Madrid are the latest club to be linked with the Serbian, with the suggestion that the Spanish giants might want to do a deal this month, even though Vidic would be ineligible for the Champions League.

However, Vidic's agent Paolo Fabbri has tried to play down such talk.

"I am quite surprised by all these rumours, the situation is under control and is not unusual," Fabbri told ESPN Soccernet.

"As far as I know the player is not negotiating with any other club.

"Regarding the mood of the player, I think it is standard. I have not spoken to him since the last defeat, but as far as I know there is no problem."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

Feather dust-up

A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
Boris Johnson's war on diesel

Boris Johnson's war on diesel

11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
5 best waterproof cameras

Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

Louis van Gaal interview

Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

Will Gore: Outside Edge

The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz