Ferguson: ‘Schalke will be difficult’

Sir Alex Ferguson admits that Manchester United’s semi-final clash will not be easy.

Sir Alex Ferguson has admitted that overcoming Schalke 04 will be no mean feat.

Manchester United meet Schalke tonight in the first leg of the Champions League semi-final. While the Premiership leaders are firm favourites to overcome the Germans, who are currently tenth in the Bundesliga, the manager praised the team’s recent form.

"Schalke have beaten every team at home in the Champions League this season, including Valencia and Inter Milan,” he said. “If you just take that in isolation, it is good form.

"There is no way we will be led into believing this is going to be easy."

If the Reds are victorious at this stage, they will go on to their third final in four seasons. However, they have had trouble against German opposition in recent years, most recently falling to Bayern Munich at the quarter-finals last year.

"Semi-finals are never easy,” Ferguson said. "This is going to be a difficult game and we will treat it that way."

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