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Lindegaard speaks of Fergie warmth


Anders Lindegaard

Anders Lindegaard

Anders Lindegaard

Anders Lindegaard will never forget how relaxed Sir Alex Ferguson made him feel when he was first introduced to the legendary Manchester United manager.

Lindegaard is hoping to at least find himself on the bench on Saturday when United tackle City in the concluding Premier League Manchester derby of the campaign. Tensions are likely to be high in both camps, which certainly was not the case when Lindegaard met Ferguson on a whistlestop tour of United's Carrington training complex late last year.

"I remember almost everything Sir Alex Ferguson said to me," said the 26-year-old. "The thing I remember most was how comfortable he made me feel. He is maybe the greatest man in football right now but he can still make people feel comfortable in his appearance. That is a very good skill to have."

Once he gets his squad back together - Javier Hernandez will be the latest arrival when he returns from Mexico's meeting with Bosnia - Ferguson will be better able to judge the make-up of his team for the crucial City clash.

However, it would be no surprise if the Scot stuck with the bulk of those players who remained in Manchester this week, which could mean as many as nine members of his starting line-up go into the game fresh as they attempt to prevent Roberto Mancini's men closing to within a couple of points.

Lindegaard realises the eyes of the world will be on Old Trafford, eager to discover who comes out on top in what has turned into one of the biggest derbies in world football.

But the Denmark international, who was on the bench for this week's friendly defeat by England, does not believe the enormity of the occasion will affect the performance of his team-mates, seven days after they lost that unbeaten record at Wolves.

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"That defeat last Saturday was a surprise, but only in the sense that it is a surprise every time Manchester United don't win," he said. "Standards in the Premier League are evening out. You have four or five really good teams and the rest are at the same level.

"It wasn't like that five or 10 years ago. Now you can't feel sure about a win in any match.

"Of course, City is a different type of game anyway. I was involved in the FA Cup tie Liverpool and I would imagine this game will be the same. But you don't think about how many people are watching. You just focus on yourself and doing as well as you possibly can."

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