Sir Alex Ferguson Is Wary Of Complacency

Sir Alex Ferguson has urged his Manchester United players not to let their season evaporate in the space of the next five days. Ferguson’s team take a 2-0 first-leg lead into their Champions League semi-final against German side Schalke at Old Trafford with most people expecting them to cruise through to the final. They then take on Chelsea in a Premier League crunch clash this Sunday.

The United boss has told his players to beware the lessons of last season, when a 2-1 league defeat by Chelsea was quickly followed by a European exit against Bayern Munich at Old Trafford.
Ferguson said, "It’s like what happened last year - exactly the same situation. That’s the optimism supporters have got (thinking United are already through) but we don’t share that. It’s easy to get complacent in modern life - there are many examples of it. I hope Manchester United don’t get complacent. Our work ethic will be very high. As regards the league, we must be favourites only because we are three points ahead but that can evaporate very quickly. As I said last week, the drama isn’t finished."
United breezed through the first leg in Gelsenkirchen last week with goals from Ryan Giggs and Wayne Rooney. Neither player is expected to start at Old Trafford as Ferguson takes precaution for the Chelsea game. Dimitar Berbatov and Michael Owen are expected to play up front against Schalke, and Darren Fletcher will return after a long lay-off.

Sunday’s 1-0 defeat at Arsenal has thrown the title race wide open but Ferguson believes his players have the mental strength to recover.
He added, "There are two massive games, both as important as ever. There will be some changes but hopefully the nucleus of the team is still good enough. It’s always been the case at this club that if we lose a game we recover. The interesting thing about (last) Sunday was that the four European semi-finalists all lost. There are stats that show the European games do take it out of you. (Coming) Sunday’s match is a huge one which is why I have to pick the right team for this one."
If Schalke progress, they would be the first Champions League team to do so having lost the home leg 2-0.

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