Manchester United beat Celtic at home before getting a result away to Benfica, following by a 3-0 thrashing of Copenhagen at Old Trafford. 9 points from 9 games and we were flying. We just needed to pick up a point or two from our remaining games to seal our qualification, no bother.
However, in our next match we lost 1-0 to Copenhagen, after Sir Alex Ferguson left some players back in Manchester for a rest. Our backs were really up against the wall when we lost our following game to Celtic, after Louis Saha missed a last minute penalty. Celtic were through and we were left to battle it out with Benfica, the team that beat us the season before, stopping us from progressing out of the Group Stages.
After going a goal behind at Old Trafford, our players came back fighting, winning 3-1 to see us out of the group, with the top spot, in a season that saw us reach thte semi-finals.
it was all so much more hassle than it needs to be, so Ferguson has promised that he has learnt his lesson.
“I don’t have any fears about complacency with this side,” said Ferguson. “But a couple of years ago we made a mistake with the team against Copenhagen because we were in a comfortable position and ended up scrapping to qualify. This time I will play my strongest team. The players know how important qualifying is. We need to get to February because that is when the tournament really takes off. If we get to that stage then we have as good a chance as anyone.”
Which team would you play tonight?