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The Red Devils defender has never watched a replay of the 2009 match but admits memories still haunt him as he expects a much improved performance in this year's showpiece

Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has admitted that that the Champions League final defeat to Barcelona in 2009 has been difficult to forget, but has vowed to make amends for a disappointing team display in Rome.

The Red Devils went into the game firm favourites but the Catalan giants, now regarded as perhaps one of the best teams ever, comfortably beat them 2-0.

The England international admits that if they could revisit the match there would have been things that they would have done differently, and feels the true Manchester United failed to turn up.

"I have never watched 2009 again," Ferdinand told reporters.

"But matches like that are hard to forget. It is clear in your head.

"If you want to sit and think about games like that they come up quite easily. It is like bringing something up on the internet.

"I have re-run it in my head a few times and we just never played. We weren't Manchester United.

"On the way back we were sitting there thinking 'if only we had gone out and been the real Manchester United, it would have been different'.

"They always say you don't want to come off the pitch with any regrets. There were regrets that night.

"This time we will give a better account of ourselves."

Manchester United will have to be at their very best to cope with the overwhelming threat which Barcelona possess.

Argentine star Lionel Messi, who has scored 52 goals so far this season, is just one of the players they will have to keep close tabs on.

But United have their own quality players with Javier Hernandez and Wayne Rooney linking well up front and the ever influential Ryan Giggs in form.

A contingency plan, however, is Darren Fletcher. The Scottish midfielder has been suffering from a stomach virus for the past two months, but could be fit to figure after missing the 2009 final due to suspension.

Fletcher has foiled teams in the past and Ferdinand believes it will great to have him back for the match.

"Darren can run ridiculous amounts during games," Ferdinand continued.

"Park Ji-sung is the only person who could rival him running-wise. That says a lot.

"He covers a lot of ground, gets at people and can score important goals.

"He gets the crowd going and is an integral member of the squad. It will be great to have him back."

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