Giggs hopes Japan trip will not derail title bid
Saturday 20 December 2008
Ryan Giggs is crossing his fingers the draining effects of jet-lag do not have a negative influence on Manchester United's hopes of a Premier League title hat-trick.
United appeared to show no ill-effects on Thursday, booking a place in tomorrow's World Club Cup final against Liga de Quito at the expense of Gamba Osaka.
Yet Giggs confirmed both he and a number of his team-mates were still struggling with sleep deprivation. He said: "I hope it won't have a knock-on effect to our title defence. We don't know how it will affect us next Friday [against Stoke]. It has been quite difficult over here. I have not slept much, four or five hours sleep a night really.
"You just have to prepare the best you can. It is a bit of a problem. Overall the team looked fit and sharp.
"We have a squad big enough to handle the games over the Christmas period and we just hope that, come that game against Stoke, we have got over it."
United have already started doing their homework on Quito and had a presence at Wednesday's semi-final in Tokyo when the Ecuadorian side eased past Mexico's Pachuca.
"They are a typical South American team," said the United manager, Sir Alex Ferguson. "Quito are competitive and mobile and they can defend well. It won't be an easy match for us but it is a world championship final and we want to win it."
Ferguson has confirmed his intention to make changes to his starting line-up, with Wayne Rooney among those set to come in and Edwin van der Sar part of the group to miss out.
Latest in Sport
Arsenal transfer news: Arsene Wenger says he will be 'actively involved' on deadline day... but may not buy a striker despite Giroud injury
Fernando Torres to AC Milan: Jose Mourinho talks up Mattia Destro with Torres on verge of Chelsea exit
Mario Balotelli has been 'spoken to at length' and Liverpool have ensured he lives on Merseyside rather than Manchester
Champions League draw: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City learn group stage fate
Tottenham vs Liverpool: Hugo Lloris expects Spurs to wipe away shame of 4-0 and 5-0 defeats last season
- 2 Oil tanker with $100 million cargo goes missing off Texas coast
- 4 Saudi Arabia executes 19 in one half of August in 'disturbing surge of beheadings'
Robin Williams Emmys tribute led by Billy Crystal criticised for including 'racist' joke about Muslim woman
The Rotherham child abuse scandal is a tale of apologists, misogyny and double standards
What do immigrants really think of Britain? Polish immigrant's Reddit post goes viral
Scottish independence TV debate: Pumped-up Alex Salmond bounces back in bruising second round against Alistair Darling
Do you realise just how foolish the UK looks?
With Douglas Carswell joining Ukip, my party has taken another giant step forward