Manchester United put their impressive recent record against Arsenal on the line on Saturday night with Sir Alex Ferguson admitting nothing can be taken for granted by his misfiring side.
Barclays Premier League defeats to Chelsea and Liverpool have left the Red Devils licking their wounds this week and another reverse at Old Trafford would represent the first time the Red Devils have lost three games on the trot since May 2001.
And despite United having lost just one of their last 10 meetings with the Gunners, Ferguson said: "Matches against Arsenal are always hard and competitive. You hope to perform properly in these games and our recent record is an indication that we have done that."
He added: "But you don't take anything for granted because when two good teams meet each other you want to be the better team on the day."
United will be weakened by the absence of up to 10 senior players, including Nani, who suffered a serious gash to his leg in a challenge with Liverpool's Jamie Carragher at Anfield on Sunday.
Many observers felt the tackle warranted a red card and Carragher apologised immediately after the game.
Ferguson kept his own counsel after imposing a media ban and, even though he was not interested in getting involved in a debate on the matter on Friday, his one remark showed the depth of feeling.
"It was a disgraceful tackle, we know that, but you just move on," he said.
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