Carrick: Manchester United cannot afford slow start

The Red Devils midfielder warns that pre-season must be taken seriously in order to prepare for early Premier League tests against Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City
Manchester United midfielder Michael Carrick has warned his team that they cannot afford a slow start to the Premier League season.

The reigning champions will have little time to find their feed under new manager David Moyes, the fixture list having thrown up league clashes with Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City within the first month of the season.

The England international is therefore looking to focus on a strong pre-season to get them as ready as possible.

"This week, it's important because then we go on to quite a bit of flying after that," Carrick told the press as United prepare to take on an A-League All Stars team in Australia.

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"It's huge, the start of the season we have. It's important we're ready for that, we can't afford a slow start this year, so these few weeks are vital for us."

Carrick also noted that Moyes's approach to training is quite different to that of Sir Alex Ferguson, with the 50-year-old Scot having a lot of input.

"The manager is hands-on in training," he observed. "He's a lot different to Sir Alex in that sense. [Ferguson] tended to take a step back and let the coaches deal with it, whereas David Moyes tends to be right in the thick of it, which is good. It creates an intensity and everyone has responded to that.

"The tour has been really good so far and there is a great atmosphere around the place," Carrick continued, in praise of the new boss. "The manager has brought that in. He's enthusiastic and energetic and intense with his work, and that's rubbed off on everyone.

"Training has been good and there is a huge focus and a good feel around the place. I'm looking forward to this week especially, it's a big week really [for] training, because without the flying this week we've got a bit of time to prepare and get the work in."