Phelan defends Fergie's Valencia trip
Manchester United assistant boss Mike Phelan insisted the Reds put "big value" on the Carling Cup despite Sir Alex Ferguson's absence from the 5-2 win at Scunthorpe. While the Reds, showing 11 changes from Sunday's win over Liverpool, fulfilled their role on the pitch, all the focus after the game was on Ferguson's decision to travel to Spain to watch Valencia instead - the Reds opponents in the Champions League next week. Ferguson has only missed two previous competitive games in his 24 years at the Old Trafford helm, but Phelan defended the Scot's decision and insisted United have already proved their commitment to the cup. Scunthorpe 2 United 5 - interactive player ratings He said: "We put a big value on the Carling Cup. We've never set out to demean the Carling Cup. We're holders, we've done that two years in a row and you can see from the players' attitude that we want to keep hold of it." Ferguson's absence also showed how important he deems next week's Valencia match to be after United's failure to beat Rangers in their opening Champions League fixture at Old Trafford. Phelan continued: "It's important after the Rangers game that we prepare properly and get a good view of Valencia, who've started their season very well. "He chose to go and watch the Valencia game. We need to go there knowing what we're up against. He's the manager and he had to make a decision." Phelan would have had even tougher questions to answer had Scunthorpe managed to build on the flying start that saw Josh Wright send the record 9,077 crowd into raptures with a stunning opener in the 19th minute. But Darron Gibson equalised four minutes later and Chris Smalling put United ahead with his first goal for the club. The visitors made sure of victory after the break with two goals from Michael Owen and one from Park Ji-sung before Martyn Woolford finished off the scoring by grabbing a deserved second for Scunthorpe. Scunthorpe 2 United 5 - interactive player ratings What do you think? Have your say.
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