Manchester United defender Chris Smalling has played down David Moyes' fears over the club's tough start to the season.
Moyes condemned the Premier League after United were 'randomly' scheduled to play Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City in their first five games.
Smalling, however, believes that United's opening fixtures could work in the Premier League champions' favour if they were to pick up a reasonable amont of points from the aforementioned games.
Smalling, speaking to the Daily Star, said: "We've got some big fixtures at the start of the season but if we can put on some really good performances and pick up a few points it's going to give us a big boost and set us apart from our rivals.
"In one sense it is good to get them out of the way.
"The Swansea game has been in our minds for a while.
The England international also said that his side will be under pressure to retain their Premier League title - despite the fact Moyes may need time to find his feet at Old Trafford.
Smalling added: "Going into the season as champions brings an expectation.
"We're seen as the best but we know we need to show it but we're firing and ready to go.
"We can't wait for that first whistle."
The 23-year-old will be competing with Phil Jones to start in defence against Swansea City on Saturday, as first choice right-back Rafael is suspended for the Red Devils' Premier League opener.