Alexander Buttner has stated his desire to improve in his second year at Manchester United, with the hope of cementing his place in the first-team.

The Dutch defender was signed for £4m last summer from Vitesse, but struggled for appearances as captain and first-choice left-back Patrice Evra enjoyed one of his best seasons at Old Trafford to date.

Although, Buttner has insisted that the competition for places is healthy and provides the club with strength-in-depth.

"Manchester United need two good left-backs," Buttner told the Independent. "I put pressure on Patrice (Evra) because I did well when I played.

"But Patrice did well also. That is the way it works at United, you put pressure on each other.

"This season my target is to play more games. I want to go for the left-back position."

The 24-year-old made 13 appearances in all competitions last campaign and displayed a great desire to get forward from the back, evidenced by his two Premier League goals. But, it is uncertain how well he can fulfil his defensive duties.

Moyes’ interest in bringing Leighton Baines to Old Trafford has outlined this, and with Evra now at 32, Buttner’s time to step up is now.

Everton have already rejected one bid from United, but it is understood they could return with an improved offer, not that Buttner is fazed by the speculation.

"The speculation doesn't bother me," he said. "I hear the name Baines but for me I don't care.

"I want to play my own game. If he comes I don't think my future will be in danger.

"I just want to be strong and let the trainer see what I have got. I don't think about other players, just myself."

Buttner has enjoyed a successful pre-season tour, in which he has featured extensively for the Reds, indicating that perhaps Moyes likes what he has seen of the defender, and possibly the reason why United haven’t returned with another bid for Baines.

Buttner certainly has the confidence and the ability to become one of the Premier League's best left-backs, but he will have to prove this season that he can handle himself at both ends of the pitch.


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