Football

Manchester United Vs Wolverhampton Wanderers, Sat 6 Nov 2010

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Assistant manager Mike Phelan insists there is no chance of Manchester United ignoring the threat posed by Wolves by spending too much time worrying about next week's derby with Manchester City.

The anticipation of Wednesday's Eastlands clash has been growing steadily for a fortnight, with first City believing they were in the ascendancy and now United hoping to capitalise on their neighbours' mounting problems.

But Phelan realises United's players cannot afford to look too far ahead, with United at home to Wolves and City travelling to West Brom on Sunday.

Having slipped five points adrift of leaders Chelsea already, United accept no further ground can be lost.

And, having been given one searching examination by Wolves in the Carling Cup less than a fortnight ago and then seeing Mick McCarthy's side come from behind to beat City in the Premier League, Phelan is calling for a blinkered approach.

"There is no chance we could get sidetracked by Wednesday's game," Phelan said.

"The next match is always the most important one and we know how difficult it can be if you take your eye off the ball.

"Wolves are a tough proposition. I have heard that everybody is requesting they play a strong side. I am sure they were always intending to do that anyway."

In the corresponding fixture last season, McCarthy made 10 changes and Wolves were handed a #25,000 suspended fine by the Premier League.

It proved to be the right decision with Wolves winning the following game with Burnley on their way to retaining their top-flight status.

Phelan was standing in for manager Sir Alex Ferguson, who has been struck down by a virus similar to the one which prevented four players making the journey to Turkey for Tuesday's win over Bursaspor and keeps Darron Gibson out.

In addition, Nani is sidelined with the groin injury which forced him off in the first half in Turkey, although the Portugal winger is responding to treatment and has a chance of being involved in the City game.

Ferguson must decide whether to risk Darren Fletcher, who turned his ankle in midweek, and Ryan Giggs, who has featured just once in eight games due to a hamstring problem, with the City encounter so close.

Meanwhile, Kevin Doyle believes Wolves winger Matt Jarvis is "playing well enough" to earn a first England call-up for the friendly international with France later this month.

And Wolves boss McCarthy has reiterated that the 24-year-old, who recently signed a new five year contract, "isn't going anywhere".

Jarvis has impressed with his performances against Chelsea, Manchester United - in the Carling Cup - and Manchester City in successive matches.

Doyle told Press Association Sport: "Jarvo is playing well enough to get the call-up from England.

"He is as good as that at the moment. He deserves it. I can't remember the last time a Wolves player got called up.

"Not only on the pitch, but off the pitch, he does everything right.

"Physically he looks after himself brilliantly and he is always trying to improve.

"It would be a just reward if he gets a call-up. I see him play for us every week and he has been excellent."

McCarthy said: "Matt is playing as well as he has ever done. He's causing problems to anybody who he plays against, whether on the right or left.

"He gave Ashley Cole as good a game as he has had, caused Gary Neville and Wes Brown problems and the same with Micah Richards.

"I don't think anyone is enjoying playing against him.

"I get asked if I am worried about keeping Matt and the answer is `no, not really,' because he has just signed a new five year deal.

"We all know that gives you a little bit of protection in terms of the price but he isn't going anywhere.

"If we are doing well, there will be no desire to leave if one of the big boys come in for anybody."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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Topics:
Football
Premier League
Manchester United
Wolverhampton Wanderers

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