Sunday, February 18, 2007

Boss: Cup replay is no big issue

Sir Alex Ferguson insists his "terrific squad" can cope with an unplanned extra fixture following Saturday's surprise 1-1 draw with Reading at Old Trafford.

United must now journey south to the Madejski Stadium for an FA Cup replay, in the midweek between tricky Premiership trips to Fulham on 24 February and Liverpool on 3 March. But the Reds boss said: "The replay is not a big issue for us.

"We have not got a big backlog of fixtures and we have got a terrific squad. We rested six players today and those who came in have all proved their worth.

"I thought it was a good team performance, we played some fantastic football at times, and it was a fantastic cup tie."

Although he's far from dreading a replay, the United manager admitted he was disappointed not to knock-out Reading at the first attempt. Especially after seeing Solskjaer, Saha, Ronaldo and Park all go close - but not close enough - to joining Carrick on the scoresheet.

"We regret the chances we missed," conceded Sir Alex.

"I've always said 1-0 is nothing really. You can lose a goal in a second and we lost one from a corner kick when they had only five players in the box, we had 10, it's amazing.

"I thought the chances we missed were a big break for Reading. They got a bit of that luck you get in the cup, sometimes it goes that way.

"But you also have to give credit to Reading. They worked hard, kept fighting and they are an honest team."

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