EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEWS

"The media can look at United and analyse it too much. Inside the club, they won't be worrying what people are saying and writing. The manager will have his say, the coaches will have their say and the players too. They will know what targets are what got to do and where to improve and I'm sure they will do that."

30/11/2011 14:04, Report by Adam Marshall
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Butt: Reds exit was hard

to know that before we'd go out. Maybe it sounds a bit big-headed but we knew we were more than capable of winning in maybe third or fourth gear. Now it's moved on and teams are having a right go which is good to watch. But I still think United are always strong favourites when at home.

What's your assessment of United's form?
United started well but have flattened out a little bit but that happens. Every team in the whole season has its ups and downs, no matter how good you are or what team you are. Every team has ups and downs, hopefully United have had theirs and can kick on. City will have bad times, there's no question about it. Chelsea have had a bad time already and everyone has bad times it's just a matter of how you deal with them. No matter how good a team are, they still have bad moments. Hopefully, the bad moments will be overcome.

How does the club handle any rough patches internally?
The media can look at United and analyse it too much. Inside the club, they won't be worrying what people are saying and writing. The manager will have his say, the coaches will have their say and the players too. They will know what targets are what got to do and where to improve and I'm sure they will do that.

How difficult will it be for United to retain the title?
It is hard every year and it seems to be getting harder. The great thing about the club is the challenge. I think if there wasn't a challenge, a lot of palyers would be bored and the manager would get bored as well. But, every year, teams get bigger and none bigger than City, our local rivals, who are coming up there and have done a really great job in getting a team together. So it's a big challenge for us. I think whoever beats United to the top will be a good team and I still fancy them for the league, to be fair. I don't know about City, they're a fantastic team who can beat anybody on their day but the thing at the back of my mind, niggling away, is what's next? There's always something at club, someone who's not happy and that's why team spirit and a good, settled squad can take you a long way. The squad all know who the boss is at United - it's the manager and nobody challenges him. I'm sure they'll have chats with him, like everyone does, but everyone knows who the manager is and their position in the squad and they get on with it. If they do knock on the door and ask why they're not playing, it never gets aired.

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