Chelsea's Frank Lampard has set a defiant tone against Barclays Premier League trophy holders Manchester United, saying that despite the Red Devils' transfer activity, the Blues will still fight with a renewed focus.
Lampard and Co. lost out to Ferguson's side in the closing stages of last season, but the 33-year-old midfielder insisted he wasn't frightened by United's plans for their title defence.
"We are going to be very strong next season and, however much Manchester United spend, we still believe in ourselves," said Lampard. "They have been very active and spent fortunes on good quality players but we know we have a very good squad.
"But credit to United, they deserved to win the league and I don't tink anyone would dispute that Barcelona deserved to win the European Cup.
The England midfielder blamed a loss of focus for Chelsea's eventual flop, but spelled out the positive influence new manager Andre Villas Boas had brought to training.
"Our problems came in the middle of the season when we couldn't get our focus right," he continued.
"This season will be about keeping our eye on the ball. But the manager wants us to come here [the far east] so he can evaluate what he's got.
"On the training ground it has been a bit different to what we are used to. It's always been fast and intense and there's not been one session where people can relax or be sloppy.
"I think the fact that André is young is irrelevant. There is a nice freshness, a new style and new training methods from last year. His quality is important, however. You saw that at Porto and we know his ideals are very similar to what we had at Chelsea before.
"There is some discipline and some rules that are important. He doesn't want to lay down too many laws but he expects us to understand the laws without having to tell us."