Evra encouraged by young guns
Sir Alex Ferguson has never thought of age as being a barrier to United's senior ranks. However, the Red Devils chief has caught most observers on the hop this season by fielding half a dozen at a time during his side's opening three matches. Ferguson's faith has been rewarded with the Community Shield and six points so far and despite Arsenal's Champions League win in midweek, United will be heavy favourites to make it three Premier League triumphs on the trot at Old Trafford on Sunday. The results emphasise how much work United have put into their youth structures, which Evra is not convinced they always get credit for. "People talk about the academy of a lot of clubs but they didn't say enough about Manchester United," he told BBC Radio Manchester. "United is a big club, with a lot of pressure. But they are never scared to put young players into the team. "It is just unbelievable. They bring a lot of energy and keep the team young. "But it is really important for the experienced players to help them because there will be some difficult moments. "It is one thing playing for Manchester United, the key is to keep going. Manchester United has to stay at the same level." They have done a pretty good job of that over the past two decades, during which time they have collected 12 titles, two Champions League final wins and countless other honours. For most of that time they were in direct competition with Arsenal. No longer it seems. The departures of Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri have left obvious holes in the Gunners ranks which manager Arsene Wenger has, thus far, failed to fill. Evra has been critical of Arsenal in the past. For now though, he is playing the diplomat. "Arsenal are still a big team," he said. "They have had players leaving but that is not my business. My business is Manchester United. "We just have to respect them and concentrate on ourselves." Rio Ferdinand will hope to play some part after discovering his hamstring injury was not as serious as initially feared. Darren Fletcher could be involved too after completing 90 minutes for the reserves in their six-goal hammering of Swansea last night, although Antonio Valencia again missed out even though Ferguson has previously suggestion the Ecuador winger is ready to hit the comeback trail after an ankle injury suffered at Copa America.