Paul Scholes has no doubt Manchester City are going to be a footballing force - he just does not want them to begin their march next month.
As a nine-time Premier League title winner with Manchester United, Scholes has experienced most events in his illustrious footballing career, but the 35-year-old will get the taste of something new when City tackle the Red Devils in the two-legged Carling Cup semi-final.
He said: "There is a bit of a way to go before you think of Manchester City as a main rival in terms of the league and the Champions League. But they are definitely going forward and with the players and money at their disposal, I am sure, given time, they will be right up there."
Scholes is realistic enough to acknowledge that any club willing to spend £120million in a single transfer window, as the Blues did last summer, is eventually bound to be a success.
But he is eager that United do not play a part in them achieving it.
"These games are certainly something to look forward to," he said. "Both matches will have great atmospheres and it would be fantastic to get through to the final by beating City."
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