Giggs ‘disappointed’ with 2-0

Sir Alex Ferguson praised the efforts of his players as United

dominated a poor Schalke side in the first leg of their Champions

League semi-final to take a commanding lead back to the second leg

at Old Trafford. United completely ran the first 45 minutes but

could not find a way to beat Schalke’s highly-rated goalkeeper

Manuel Neuer and it took until the 67th for the away side to

finally break the deadlock. Giggs, who had missed a couple of

fantastic chances, was played in by Wayne Rooney and finished well

before Rooney himself made it 2-0 only two minutes later. “Our

concentration, intensity and speed of passing was excellent,”

Ferguson told Sky Sports 2. “We had less chances in the second half

but were more dangerous, when Chicharito scored and it was offside

it told the players they could beat the goalkeeper.” Ferguson also

suggested the ability to name the same starting 11 that played

against Chelsea in the last round was a deciding factor. “The

continuity of selection in these games gives us good experience and

work-rate and I have good options with the likes of Nani, Scholes

and Anderson. We have selection problems now but that is what we

want.” The United boss even went as far as suggesting he could rest

key players in the return leg as the fight to win back the Premier

League takes preference. “Depending on the result on Sunday [at

Arsenal] I could make two or three changes because we play Chelsea

the following weekend.” “We are a bit disappointed we didn’t take

more chances but overall we are delighted with the performance,” he

added. “In the first half especially we had some good chances and

we were disappointed at half time not to be in front.” But Rooney

refused to accept that United now have one foot in the final at

Wembley, knowing that Schalke scored five goals in the San Siro

against Inter in the last round. “Schalke are a good team and we

can’t take them lightly. We need to make sure we are professional

and full concentrated,” he said. Giggs insisted the players were

confident they would be able to find a goal despite being

constantly thwarted by the impressive Neuer. “We knew that if we

kept creating chances one would go in and hopefully I would get one

on my left foot rather than my right,” he said. “Before the game we

would have taken 2-0 but now we are slightly disappointed.” The

Welshman, who becomes the oldest player to score in the history of

the Champions League, also praised the depth of Sir Alex Ferguson’s

squad. “We’ve got a tough game coming up Sunday so the manager

rotated and we are obviously pleased, the lads who came on did well

too so it’s not just about the 11 players, it’s about the squad,”

he said.