Both Carrick and Berbatov, ex Spurs mates, vow to give their 100% to avoid slip ups this year. Could this year be the dream start for Manchester United? They have a reputation of starting slowly in the Premier League....Sir Alex Ferguson's side lost eight times last term as they were beaten to the title by Chelsea by a single point.
|Can they live up the expectations this year?|
"Teams who have finished around the Champions League places are looking to break through and you really have to start firing from the off." Carrick expects Newcastle to provide a stern test, though, following their return to the top flight after just one season in the Championship.
"Newcastle will be flying," said Carrick, who hails from Wallsend in Tyne and Wear. "They are back in the Premier League and what better place to start than Old Trafford."They obviously want to get off to a good start and build up some momentum themselves. "It is only two years ago that we played them in the first game at Old Trafford and drew. Hopefully it will be better this time." Magpies boss Chris Hughton admits a trip to Old Trafford is not what he would have chosen for his side's first match back in the Premier League.
"It will be a massive challenge for us," he said. "But this is what we worked so hard for last season to get straight back up into this division. "It's probably not the ideal choice. I think the ideal choice would have been to have a home game."
Wayne Rooney, Michael Owen, Dimitar Berbatov and new recruit Javier Hernandez are all vying for a striking berth in the Manchester United line-up. But the home side will be without centre-half Rio Ferdinand (knee) and long-term injury victims Owen Hargreaves and Anderson.