FOOTBALL NEWS

27/09/2011 22:23, Report by Adam Bostock
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Carrick: Draw like a defeat

Michael Carrick offered "no excuses" as the Manchester United players reflected on the loss of two Champions League points at Old Trafford.

The final scoreline of 3-3 seemed far-fetched when the Reds were 2-0 up at the interval, even if visitors FC Basel had been lively at times in the first period. But while Carrick says his side were warned against complacency - "We said at half-time that the game wasn’t over" - the hosts still contrived to toss away the advantage as Alexander Frei (2) and his namesake Fabien Frei fired Basel into a surprise lead.

"It was a bit of a shock to find ourselves 3-2 down after being 2-0 up," said Carrick. "We’ve  no excuses, we threw it away. It’s not like us at all."

Finding a goal at the death was more like United, of course - "What we expect of ourselves really is to keep going. We believe that if we get a chance, we’ll score," said Carrick.

"Thankfully Ashley Young put it away and we might even have nicked a win in the end when Berba had half a chance. But that was probably asking too much."

Young's last-gasp goal - so typical of the Reds - perfectly illustrated Carrick's next point that the summer signing from Aston Villa has fully acclimatised to life at Old Trafford.

"He’s settled in quick and bought into everything about the club and how we approach things," praised Carrick. "He’s got bags of character, he’s kept going tonight and got his reward."

The 3-3 draw with FC Basel leaves United with only two points from the opening two games but the onus on the Reds to win the next two matches, away and at home to Champions League newcomers Otelul Galati, was always there insists Carrick.

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