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Downing keen for clean break

LIVERPOOL winger Stewart Downing hopes the international break will not have affected the team's momentum as they head into a home clash with arch-rivals Manchester United tomorrow.

The Reds bounced back from successive defeats -- their first of the season -- to beat Wolves and neighbours Everton. But the victory over their Merseyside rivals was almost a fortnight ago now and with most players, including Downing, having been away with their national teams, the break may have done more harm than good. He stressed the side have to pick up from where they left off.


"It's a tough game but we'll look forward to it and if we keep playing the way we are then we've got a chance of beating anyone," said Downing.

"If we beat Manchester United we'll say the break did us good. If we don't people will point the finger and say the break killed us a bit."

Manager Kenny Dalglish will lock horns with Alex Ferguson again after their two clashes last season finished with one victory apiece. However, the Liverpool boss was keen to point out there is nothing personal in his desire to beat United again.

"I'm not egotistical, I'm not in this to get one over anyone else," he said.

"I don't have any individual contest with Fergie. This football club is more important than me and always will be.

"Head-to-head (against Ferguson)? I wouldn't have a clue what the score is in that and it doesn't really matter to me."