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Manchester United can conquer Europe without Cristiano Ronaldo: Nemanja Vidic
Published : 14 Sep 2009 10:10:22Rss feed
Nemanja Vidic claims Manchester United will return to European action against Besiktas in Istanbul tomorrow expecting to avenge last season's Champions League final defeat this campaign. United, who relinquished their European crown against Barcelona in Rome last May, begin their campaign against Besiktas - defeated 3-0 against Galatasaray on Saturday - in the Inonu Stadium on Tuesday evening. The Premier League champions have lost Cristiano Ronaldo and Carlos Tevez since losing to Barcelona and, despite Saturday's 3-1 victory at Tottenham, question marks remain over United's ability to defend their title and regain the European Cup. But Serbian defender Vidic insists that United still expect to conquer Europe, even without the unique talents of Ronaldo. Vidic said: "Perhaps on paper we are weaker this season, but on the pitch it is a different matter. It is true that we will miss Cristiano Ronaldo and Carlos Tevez for their goals. We cannot deny that. "But this United squad really has enormous potential because we have so many talented youngsters who are improving all the time. "Together, we have the determination and ability to prove to everyone that we can still accomplish all our goals this season. "The desire to win the Champions League trophy again never wanes. I can assure you that everyone at Manchester United will be very unhappy if we fail to win the competition this season. "Our expectations have not gone down at all because of the rebuilding. Our goals are exactly the same. To win the Premier League and to win the Champions League." Vidic has been linked with moves to Barcelona and AC Milan since the end of last season, but despite rumours that he is unsettled in Manchester, the former Spartak Moscow defender insists that the prospect of winning more silverware with United overrides any personal issues. He said: "I'm not an English boy, but I have grown accustomed to the lifestyle and I'm enjoying myself in Manchester. "I always try to give the best. Winning three major titles in one season is not something that would happen every day and last season we won the league again. "The season is very long and we know what it means to be a Manchester United player. Everyone gives their all against us. But that's no problem for us. We are paid loads of money to win and that is what we intend to do. "The club will continue to aspire to all the biggest goals no matter who leaves us. We can still win all the trophies on offer this season. We genuinely believe our fans will have many reasons to be happy this season and it is our intention to make that happen."