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Ferguson rules out spending spree

Sir Alex Ferguson
Ferguson's Man Utd are closing in on a league and European Cup double

Sir Alex Ferguson says he expects little transfer activity at Manchester United this summer, insisting there are no players he is keen to sign.

"We won't be going for a lot of players," said the 67-year-old Scot, whose side are closing in on a Premier League and Champions League double.

"We have a big squad and I can honestly say there's no one we've identified we want to bring here at the moment.

"We are not looking to add a lot of players to our squad."

Recent reports have linked United with a £62.5m move for Bayern Munich's France international forward Franck Ribery, 26, while the futures of Carlos Tevez and Cristiano Ronaldo at Old Trafford remain the subject of constant media speculation.

A lot of clubs, knowing that Man City have that money there, will be adding noughts onto the value of every player they go for

Sir Alex Ferguson

But Ferguson predicts managerial counterpart Mark Hughes, whose Manchester City side play United on Sunday, will have a busier time in the close season.

"It is going to be a busy summer for them," said Ferguson. "But it is all about availability. Some clubs don't want to sell their players to anyone, which is admirable.

"It is a difficulty. You could have a check list of players but it is reduced by 50% because clubs don't want to sell.

"Then a lot of clubs, knowing that City have that money there, will be adding noughts onto the value of every player they go for.

606: DEBATE

"Mark has to try and evaluate the players he wants at his values rather than their values. That is the difficult thing."

Since taking over City, the Abu Dhabi United Group have flexed their muscle in the transfer market, most notably by setting a British record in signing Robinho for £32.5m at the start of this season.

But they failed in a very public attempt to sign Brazilian striker Kaka from AC Milan and continue to be linked with a number of other high-profile players, like Barcelona's Samuel Eto'o and Real Madrid's Raul.

New players are unlikely to be a top priority for Hughes ahead of Sunday's game at Old Trafford.

The City boss is keen to halt United's march to another Premier League crown and thinks it is a good time to be facing his old club.

We're in decent shape and if ever there was a time for us to go to Old Trafford, it's now

Mark Hughes

"We're on a nice little run, four games unbeaten, and, as I have said all week, you have to go to Old Trafford with a lot of belief and confidence," he said.

"That's what we have, we're playing well and winning games. We're looking forward to Sunday, we're in decent shape and if ever there was a time for us to go to Old Trafford, it's now."

Sunday's derby with City will be United's 63rd game of the season but Ferguson says his players are looking fresher than ever.

"The players are smelling the big games now," said the United chief. "They like that big-game situation. They have proved they can handle it and they are hitting top form at the right time."

Cristiano Ronaldo
Ronaldo is hitting top form at just the right time, according to Ferguson

United are three points ahead of second-placed Liverpool in the race for the Premier League title and have a game in hand on their Merseyside rivals.

"It is ours to win in the sense of the points we are ahead of our opponents," said Ferguson. "With the form we are in, we have a good chance."

He is particularly pleased with Ronaldo, who is back to his attacking best.

"Cristiano is coming good just at the right time," said Ferguson. "He took a while to get into his rhythm after his operation.

"But he is a fantastic athlete, with great physique who never misses a game. We are lucky to have that combination, and courage as well.

"Obviously he won't get to 42 goals like he did last season but he is up to 25 now, which is still a fantastic tally for someone who is regarded as a wide player."



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see also
Man Utd v Man City
07 May 09 |  Premier League
Hughes makes light of Raul rumours
08 May 09 |  Football
Brown set to miss Man Utd run-in
08 May 09 |  Man Utd
Ronaldo was key to win - Ferguson
06 May 09 |  Europe
Man City discuss Eto'o with Barca
01 May 09 |  Man City
Kaka: 'Why I'm staying at AC Milan'
20 Jan 09 |  Man City
Man City buyers complete takeover
23 Sep 08 |  Man City


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