Saturday 10 December 2016

Vidic and Ferdinand miss Rangers clash

Published 23/11/2010 | 13:56

Manchester United's first choice centre-back pairing, Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic, will both miss the trip to Rangers
Manchester United's first choice centre-back pairing, Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic, will both miss the trip to Rangers

Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic will both miss Manchester United's Champions League trip to Rangers.

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Although the central defensive duo trained at Carrington this morning, neither were part of Sir Alex Ferguson's squad for the Battle of Britain clash at Ibrox.

With a Premier League meeting with in-form Blackburn looming on Saturday and a Carling Cup quarter-final at West Ham next Tuesday, Ferguson has opted to give both men a rest, believing his squad are capable of gaining the point required to secure qualification for the knock-out phase without them.

Chris Smalling and Jonny Evans, who has not featured since the Carling Cup win over Wolves in October, are expected to deputise.

In addition, Darren Fletcher also sits out the return to Scotland.

Although he has had a heavy workload recently, Fletcher would have relished an outing for United north of the border.

Darron Gibson and Gary Neville were the other notable absentees from training this morning as United stayed at Carrington for their final session ahead of their short flight to Glasgow.

Ryan Giggs took part in training and Wayne Rooney is expected to make his first start since the Premier League visit to Bolton at the beginning of last month.

Meanwhile Park Ji-sung, looking ahead to the Battle of Britain collision, does not feel it quite matches the games he plays for South Korea against Japan.

"We have a long history with Japan," he said. "When South Korea play against Japan the fans tell us that if we lose they are going to throw the players into the sea. Without doubt, they are the biggest thing for us."

Yet Park is acutely aware of the cross-border tensions that surround English meetings with Scotland.

His own experiences involve Celtic. But he knows he should expect something similarly special.

"The atmosphere in the stadium is totally different," he said. "You cannot compare it to a league game or others in the Champions League. It more aggressive on the pitch and the atmosphere in the stadium is really high. There is a lot more media attention as well.

"Nobody has to say anything, it is just a natural feeling that this is a different game. And it doesn't only apply to the British players. It is equally special for the foreign ones as well.

"If we get a draw we will be through but we are not going there to get one point. We want three.

"If we get through the manager can rest a few players for the last game, which is a far better option for home when you consider the number of league games and other cup ties we still have to deal with."

Press Association

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