Following their exit from the UEFA Champions League, Manchester United must now look forward to staying in the FA Cup as they welcome Chelsea to Old Trafford in the quarter-final tie.
With their chances of emulating the heroic side of 1999 ruined by Real Madrid on Tuesday evening, United must now bounce back strongly against Chelsea and stay in the FA Cup to stay in contention for a domestic double. And with the heartache from their European elimination still fresh in their minds, they will be desperate to overcome the Blues with a win and stay in the competition.
After that disappointing nigh against Madrid, United must look forward and concentrate on what they can win, rather than what they can't. Sir Alex ferguson will know this all to well with his experience, and turning the focus of his players to the Chelsea game would have been priority.
He can be encouraged by some good displays against Mouriniho's men, especially in midfield, where the likes of Michael Carrick, Ryan Giggs and Danny Welbeck worked exceptionally well for their team. And having come away with no fresh injury concerns, Ferguson will be relieved at that.
His choice no to start Wayne Rooney means that he will surely feature against the Blues this weekend, and should he start, he will be full of running in order to prove the manager that he can overcome any fitness worries he may have about him at present. And having failed to find the net recently, Robin van Persie will be looking to end his mini drought following a magnificent beginning to his United career.
But United must be wary of the threat Chelsea carry despite their stuttering form under Interim manager Rafa Benitez. The "magical 3" of Juan Mata, Eden Hazard and Oscar behind their attacking line have been deadly at times this season, and early on, were the force to be reckoned with in the Premier League. But the sacking of Di Matteo and appointing Benitez has seen Chelsea slip below Tottenham in the Premier League and they will be eager to continue in the Cup to redeem themselves after what will be considered a disappointing season so far.
And a horrendous Champions League campaign saw them crash out at the group stages, the first ever current champions to do so. The F.A. Cup and the Europa League are their only chances of silverware this season and they will be desperate to take one, if not both, back to Stamford Bridge. And they may feel that United will be on the back foot following the fashion in which they crashed out of the Champions League against Madrid on Tuesday.
For United, they must put Tuesday's events behind them and now move forward. Winning the Premier League is top priority without a doubt, but having been scolded in Europe, they will also want redemption in the FA Cup Chelsea will feel they may have an advantage in terms of the mind set of both teams going into the clash, but with a trip to Steaua Bucharest on Thursday evening in the Europa League, may find themselves on the back-foot with United having 48 hours longer to prepare.
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