Mixed emotions for Red Devils

27 August 2009 06:55
Manchester United chief executive David Gill feels the Red Devils should embrace their tricky UEFA Champions League draw. The reigning Premier League champions have been paired alongside Besiktas, CSKA Moscow and Wolfsburg in Europe's premier club competition. The draw could have been kinder to Sir Alex Ferguson's side, with long trips to Eastern Europe ahead, but Gill insists United must be pleased to have avoided the likes of Real Madrid and Inter Milan. "I think pot four was the interesting one, I think most clubs would have preferred not to get the German champions out of that, but we got it," he told Sky Sports News. "But overall we have to be happy with it and look forward to starting in three weeks. Besiktas away, long trip first one, but we will see where we go from there." United would have preferred to have avoided a trip to Istanbul first up, while a lengthy trek to Russia lies ahead when they face CSKA. Gill, though, is adamant the Red Devils will have no problem coping with travelling to far-flung destinations and admits the club are looking forward to heading back to Moscow - the scene of their 2008 triumph. "I think you can get psyched out by that sort of thing," he said. "We are in the competition and we will get on with it and I'm sure it won't affect on the games either side in the Premier League. "We will look forward to going back to Moscow, after those great scenes in 2008, so we have got to be excited about." Ferguson has also admitted that he would rather have avoided Russian and Turkish opposition, while the United chief believes Group B will be fiercely-contested. "These are difficult ties especially the trips to Russia and Turkey," he told the club's official website. "CSKA have developed strongly in the last few years and games in Turkey are always difficult. "We also know the quality that we're up against with Wolfsburg, with what they achieved in the Bundesliga last season." Gill is keen to see United start the group stage in positive fashion, as early slip-ups could prove costly. "It's important to try and win the group so you have got the advantage of playing at home in the second leg of the first knockout round," he added. "But we are playing some teams we have never played before, CSKA Moscow, Wolfsburg, we have played Besiktas, and I think we have to look forward to it. "I imagine the guys in Manchester have started doing their homework now to assess the teams and give Alex all the information he needs to try and prepare the club for those games." Meanwhile, Gill has ruled out the possibility of United dipping back into the transfer market before the summer window closes on Tuesday. "I think we have done everything we wanted to do," he said. "We made some moves early on in the transfer window, brought some players in, and I think we are very comfortable with the composition of the squad and we look forward to having a great season."

Source: SKY_Sports