Grayson confident of upset
Leeds manager Simon Grayson is confident his side can cause an upset against Man Utd in the FA Cup.
By James Riach
Last Updated: 02/01/10 2:06pm
Leeds manager Simon Grayson is confident his side can cause an upset against Manchester United in the FA Cup.
The Whites travel to Old Trafford on Sunday for the third-round tie against their arch rivals, having not faced the Red Devils since February 2004.
Leeds are currently flying high at the top of League One and Grayson believes they can upset the odds against the Premier League champions, although he admits it will be tough going.
"We're in a decent run of form and we're very confident in what we can try and achieve," he said.
"I feel we have got some talented players that can perform, certainly in the next level and hopefully the next level after that, but the proof will be in the pudding on Sunday. Hopefully we will be able to handle it.
"We're going into the game with a huge amount of confidence and belief.
"We're defending well and look like we're going to score at most times but this (Manchester United) is the best team in Europe.
"We want to go and enjoy and thrive on the experience and hopefully by the end of the game we'll have learned a great deal about ourselves.
"They will believe by the time the kick-off comes around that's for sure. The last thing I will tell them is good luck, and make sure you win the game."
Leeds captain Richard Naylor is also relishing the trip across the Pennines, having been a lifelong Whites fan.
The 32-year-old defender joked in the build-up that his friends have been sending him text messages asking him to "smash Gary Neville".
"It's a big game and, after growing up a Leeds fan with all the history, you don't like them very much," he said. "There's not much love for Manchester United, obviously.
"But I don't hate them and they've gone on to great things whereas us, as a club, have struggled over the last few years.
"If you ask any of their players that have been at the club a long time, the likes of Gary Neville, he will know the history between us and I'm sure he's got no love for Leeds United and vice versa."
Naylor revealed he wants to put in a performance to repay the Leeds supporters, who he describes as the best in the country.
"We've got the most loyal supporters in the country," he added. "They've stuck with us through the lean times and a game like this is a big thing for them and a reward for some of the places we've had to go over the past couple of years.
"It's a good thing but we want to do it week in, week out. It's where this club and the fans deserve to be.
"You ask any Leeds fan and they'll say we're as big as Manchester United."