Manchester United v Barcelona

Fergie: Don't bet against us

May 16, 2011
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Sir Alex Ferguson believes a Champions League final win over Barcelona at Wembley would end any debate about the merits of his current Manchester United side.

Sir Alex Ferguson and Pep Guardiola
GettyImagesSir Alex Ferguson and Pep Guardiola met in the 2009 Champions League final.

United were crowned champions for a record 19th time on Saturday, yet still the doubters remain. No one questions how good Barcelona are though, which is why Ferguson believes any criticism can be ended by beating Pep Guardiola's men in the Champions League final on May 28.

"Beating Barcelona would end all arguments about this team and that is their challenge at Wembley," he said after his 12th title triumph as United manager. "There is nothing wrong with accepting challenges and we are good at that. It doesn't matter where they come from, you have to stand up to the mark. We have shown resilience and our home form has been great. I think we are okay.

"They don't give in, that is their great quality. There are good ages in the team, a lot of good legs and a lot of speed. I know we are playing a terrific team in Barcelona but would you back against us in a big way? I don't think you would. We are capable of doing very well in the final."

Ferguson, however, said success for the likes of Javier Hernandez and Chris Smalling would push the club on for more titles.

"I think that hunger will always be there because that is my job. We try to select properly and we try to produce players properly,'' he said. ''All the players we have produced through the years have had that quality, that hunger. That includes [Tom] Cleverley, [Danny] Welbeck and others. They have what we expect of Manchester United players.

"It is difficult to say where this team stands. We have had some great teams at this club. The 1994 team and the one in 1999 stand out but all the teams we have had here have risen to the challenge, which at this club is to win things.

''Some of the young players now have their first trophy - [Antonio] Valencia, [Darron] Gibson, Hernandez, Smalling - and that gives them the impetus to move on and realise what being a Manchester United player involves."