Crystal Palace manager Dougie Freedman has insisted that his players are not worried by the daunting trip to Old Trafford as they prepare to face Manchester United on Wednesday in the League Cup quarter-final.
The Eagles have made a solid start to the season and sit 10th in the Championship but they know they will be the underdogs in the clash.
But Freedman believes the players are excited about the game and will not be daunted by playing the Premier League champions on their own turf.
He told reporters: “We’re looking forward to it. We’ve played some difficult teams like Crawley, Southampton, Middlesbrough and Wigan.
“It’s not about me testing myself. The players have earned the right to be here. They’ve earned the right to play at Old Trafford. The fans have stuck by us so it will be good for them as well.
“It’s always nice to go to Old Trafford and play. We’re performing very well right now. All we can do is keep on doing what we can do. We’re not playing for points, we’re playing for a place in the semi-finals.
“Everybody’s fine. One or two longer term injuries that are still there.”
Freedman is hoping the side’s youth can continue to impress and show what they can do, adding: “We’re very proud of the young players.
“I like to show off the talent that we’ve got at the club. We run a club where we produce young players.
“I’d like to show that what we do is right. It’s something that I am wishing would happen more often in fact. Whatever happens in January will happen. They’re getting better day in day out.
“It made me a better player playing at Old Trafford.
“These fringe players are now playing week in week out and I might flip it round the other way.
“I will be picking a team that I believe can hold on as long as possible at Manchester United and picking a team that can hopefully beat Derby.”
The former Palace striker is excited about testing himself against Sir Alex Ferguson.
He added: “He’s one of the best managers that has ever been. The achievements he’s had. Many of you will remember him for his work at Manchester United.
“My memories are of his time as Scotland and Aberdeen manager. I didn’t like him because I am a Glasgow Rangers fan and he split us up.
“He’s done fantastically well. It’ll be an honour to play against him.
“I don’t drink red wine. I’ll look forward to sharing some conversation after the match although he can have the wine.”