Hiddink aims to spoil United party

03 March 2009 07:29
"I hope that we can stop him (Ferguson). I would love to stop him on this aim," said the Dutchman. "I have not had that many experiences with him directly, direct confrontations, although I remember once it was my birthday when PSV [Eindhoven] were eliminated by Manchester United. "I have met him sometimes when I have been to Manchester United, for a couple of pre-season tournaments. "I like him very much, although we don't know each other very well. I respect him very much." Hiddink is impressed with the strength in depth United have been able to show, as the likes of England duo Wayne Rooney and Michael Carrick were left out altogether at Wembley while reserve goalkeeper Ben Foster proved the hero in the shoot-out. He said: "They have been a very dominant, organised club for many years. It's a good philosophy, in my opinion. "Other clubs may try to go the same way - some clubs have their own academies as well, like this club. "You want to make your players competitive for the first-team squad, as well." Essien boostChelsea's options could soon be boosted by the return of midfielder Michael Essien, who is on the brink of full fitness after long-term knee ligament problems and played for the reserves against Aston Villa on Monday night, completing the whole game and scoring in a 4-3 defeat. "It is good for a manager to have a full squad. You can pick people out of luxury. That's a nice problem," said Hiddink. "That is good with Essien coming back. As I have seen him in training sessions, he is close, very close. "We will have some more options and we can look to the players regarding shape and tactics, but you can make some variations." Hiddink has won all of his matches since taking charge at Stamford Bridge and has been impressed by the response of the Chelsea players, who fought back to beat Wigan with a stoppage-time goal from Frank Lampard at Stamford Bridge on Saturday. Clear planThe Dutchman, who remains coach of Russia, has no intentions of staying longer than the end of the season, but is clearly enjoying his time in England. "I know the demands are high. I am not going back, lying down and lighting a cigar," he said. "I demand high as well for my group where I have my influence, but I like the approach to football here in England. "I like the approach, the professionalism at every level. The man in the street understands football perfectly."

Source: SKY_Sports

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