The extracts on this page are taken from selected national newspapers. The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of Manchester United.

08/12/2011 10:32

Papers: Reds have to refocus

Kevin McCarra writes in The Guardian

Ferguson has more to focus on than Barça
Failure is inevitable now and again but it always comes as a little surprise in the case of Sir Alex Ferguson. His career, after all, has long been devoted to overcoming nearly all obstacles. The sight of Manchester United leaving the group phase after twice being unable to defeat Basel must be as incongruous as it is painful for the Old Trafford club. This game irked them, whether through the challenge that removed Nemanja Vidic from the game or the plain fact that they were not sharp enough in front of goal without Javier Hernández. It will be galling for Ferguson that elimination from this great tournament has befallen them in a game that ought to be well within the scope of the squad. For Ferguson and his men regret has more often come of late from defeats by Barcelona in Champions League finals. There is no disgrace in falling to a lineup that will take an eminent place in the history of the game but the departure from the tournament at the hands of Basel is the sort of outcome to spark recriminations and questions.

The same paper reports Sir Alex’s reaction to Roy Keane’s assertion that his old club had "got what they deserved". Keane said on ITV: "People have talked about the young players, but they've got a lot to do, it's a reality check for some." Ferguson responded: "Roy had an opportunity to prove himself as a manager and it's a hard job. We have enough good young players to see us through. I have every confidence in them."

There’s plenty of fall-out from the 2-1 defeat in Basel, with the Daily Mail describing the fact both Manchester clubs are now in the Europa League as "humiliating."

The same paper reports United have a deal in place for Dallas Texans forward Roberto Carlos Brito Rojas: "After impressing in trials, the Venezuelan has agreed a one-year development contract and will train with the youth team next year."

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