EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEWS

13/04/2009 08:18, Report by Gemma Thompson
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Carrick relishes run-in

With the season approaching a critical stage, Michael Carrick says the Reds are fully focused on seeing the job through to the end...

With so many big games coming up, is there a real air of excitement within the dressing room or a steely focus?
It’s a bit of both really. There’s always a real determination for success and thankfully we’ve had that in recent years, but we want it again. We’re English and European champions and we don’t want to let either trophy go; we’re probably even more determined than we were last year to stay on top. It's great to be playing Saturday, Wednesday, Saturday, Wednesday - you can’t wait for the big games to come and you just want to get out there and get the right result. Hopefully we can do that.

Presumably the experience of going the distance in the last two years helps…
Yes, it'll stand us in good stead. You don’t consciously draw on past experience, it just develops. You know what to expect in certain situations and the things you didn’t do so well you try to put right this time round. This is the stage when you need to go out and get the job done and we’re determined to do that.

How big a part can the fans play?
They can play a huge part in every game. The matches in which things aren’t going quite so well are the ones they pull you through. It’s easy for supporters to get a bit frustrated in those games, but our fans are always behind us which gives you a big lift. They can make Old Trafford very intimidating for opposition teams as well - I’m always glad to be playing for us when the fans are really up for it!

On a personal note, how pleased have you been with your form this season?
It’s been okay. I’m always looking to improve and I feel I have each season since I joined. Playing with top players year in, year out helps and as a team and a squad we’re getting better and becoming stronger. When you play in a great side it makes your job as an individual a lot easier in terms of improvement, and I hope there’s still a lot more to come.

Your performances this season have earned you a lot of praise in the media, but many fans would say it's nothing new and you haven't received the recognition you deserve...
Well, it’s hard to comment when you’re talking about yourself! When you play in a team that’s successful then everyone must be doing something right. But I don’t mind who grabs the headlines -

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