Carrick vows to kill off Crawley
Michael Carrick is adamant there will be no complacency from Manchester United tonight as he attempts to take another step towards filling the gap in his impressive medal collection.
Few expect non-league Crawley to survive in the FA Cup beyond 7.15pm, once their dream date at Old Trafford is over.
Yet, whilst Carrick was not around when Exeter and Burton both claimed replays against Alex Ferguson's multi-million pound side, he has no wish to be on the wrong end of one of the biggest shocks in the history of the competition. "I smiled when the draw came out," said Carrick.
"It's a classic draw and one that a lot of people probably wanted to see.
"It's one of those great things the FA Cup is capable of throwing up.
"A lot of people are going to have a great day. But for us it is about getting through to the next round.
"We will give Crawley the respect they deserve and we are certainly not taking the game lightly. But we do believe, if we play well we will win."
As it turned out, drawing with Exeter was the first step towards an appearance in the final.
However then, just as in 2007, United fell at the final hurdle, meaning they are still to follow their 2004 triumph over Millwall at the Millennium Stadium, which creates that hole in so many medal collections.
"That is the one that is missing," confirmed Carrick.
"I am desperate to win it and there are a number of lads who haven't won the FA Cup either, so it is the same for them.
"It is a competition we take seriously. When you play for this club no matter what game you play in it's about winning and playing well.
"That is what we will be striving to do against Crawley."
Ferguson has pledged to play a similar strength side to the one he used at Southampton in the previous round this evening, which points towards the introduction of Gabriel Obertan and Bebe.
Goalkeeper Anders Lindegaard is set to make his home debut, whilst Wes Brown and John O'Shea could also be used in a defence lacking injured duo Rio Ferdinand and Jonny Evans.
Javier Hernandez will occupy one of the starting berths, although any involvement for Ryan Giggs is set to be limited to the substitutes' bench, even though the 37-year-old has pocketed a one-year contract extension.
"You run out of words to describe Ryan Giggs," said Ferguson.
"He is a marvellous player and a wonderful man.
"To have the desire and the ability to play at the top level in such a physically demanding position at his age requires a special person."