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United urged to go for the jugular
Published : 10 Mar 2010 09:40:10
United are being urged to show their killer instinct and shatter AC Milan's hopes by going for the jugular in tonight's Champions League crunch at Old Trafford. Sir Alex Ferguson will demand the Reds - buoyed by the return of red-hot striker Wayne Rooney - take the second leg of the first round knockout tie to the Italians and finish the job early. Two years ago, United secured a 2-0 win against Roma in Italy. But in the return in Manchester it wasn't until Carlos Tevez scored in the 70th minute that the stadium could breathe a sigh of relief. The United boss, however, doesn't want Leonardo's team to grab an early booster and pegging them back will be his strategy for success. "I don't think we are very good at defending leads, so we will play our normal game," said Sir Alex. "That includes attacking, it always has. We will try to do it in our normal way. We hope to kill the tie with our own attacking abilities. "We are in a strong position with a 3-2 win in the San Siro, which on top of home advantage must make us favourites. "But I don't think we should be confused by the 3-2 score and think it gives us a bye or a passage into the next phase of the competition. "We have to accept this is a very difficult game for us and one that we need to win. That is how I am approaching it. Winning the match. "It is certainly an open tie. There is no doubt AC Milan have to score, which should make it a really open match. "What we need is an early goal because with the advantage of our away goals Milan would then find themselves in a very difficult position." So I won't be thinking of setting out to play defensively to protect our lead. That's not the way we play. Our best players are attackers and we play to our strengths. Fergie was disappointed that United didn't effectively end the two-legged tie in Italy. Clarence Seedorf's late goal has given the Serie A side a lifeline. The first 15 minutes three weeks ago was a bad spell for us and the best one for them. We could have been two or three down. Once we recovered we played very well and we should have killed the tie altogether, the United manager added. Goals change games and Seedorf's at the end keeps the match on a tightrope. I can understand that Milan are feeling confident. "That second goal at the end will have given them encouragement there is no question about that. We would have preferred not to have lost a goal because then the tie would have been very difficult for Milan. I would have been happier if we had been able to hang on to our 3-1 lead but we are still very much in a winning position. Ferguson is expecting Old Trafford to conjure up one of its cracking Euro atmospheres to match the San Siro volume three weeks ago.