Carrick - No excuses
Michael Carrick insists that Man Utd are not feeling the pressure going into the title run-in.
By Richard Bailey
Last Updated: 10/04/09 5:47pm
Michael Carrick insists that Manchester United are not feeling the pressure going into the decisive title run-in.
The midfielder has been one of a number of United players who have been guilty of letting their own high standards slip in recent weeks but he is determined to put right the wrongs of the past few weeks against Sunderland on Saturday.
Many thought the Red Devils had turned a corner when they secured a last-gasp winner against Aston Villa last weekend, a result which ended a run of two straight league defeats.
But defensive lapses, something that was unheard of earlier in the campaign, returned to haunt United on Tuesday when they drew 2-2 with Porto in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League tie at Old Trafford.
But the England international is adamant that the reason for the team's recent slump in form is not down to pressure or, as some people have suggested, fatigue.
"I don't know if pressure is a factor," he said.
"I have been through this each season I have been at the club. We expect to be successful. You become used to it.
Fatigue no excuse
"Fatigue is not an excuse either. We have a big squad with all the facilities we need so tiredness does not come into it.
"We want to play in every minute of every game and want to be involved in every trophy. We are not complaining about that. We just have to play well."
The 27-year-old targeted the game at the Stadium of Light as an ideal time to get back on track but at the same time he admitted that he would take any kind of win regardless of the performance at this stage of the season.
"It has been a strange time," he added.
"Obviously we have not helped ourselves because we are doing things that we have not done for so long.
"But we are going to put them right and I am sure we will start tomorrow. Then we can look back and see it as nothing more than a blip during a long season.
"At this stage it is all about winning games and picking up points. We all want to play well and win by lots of goals but it is not like that.
"Sometimes it is the games you come through when you are not at your best that give you the best feeling."