Losing to Barcelona is not golden era - Fergie

Sir Alex Ferguson insists Manchester United cannot look back at the last four years as a golden period for the club in the Champions League – because they were beaten by Barcelona in two of the three finals they reached.

The record books may show the current spell to be United’s most successful ever in Europe, but Ferguson insists they need to take that final step and win the Champions League trophy outright again in order to make such a claim.

United will resume their European campaign at home to Basle tonight – when they will be without leading strikers Wayne Rooney and Javier Hernandez due to injury – with Ferguson insisting his players need to strive for even better.

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Ferguson said: “The Champions League is the best competition in the world now, better than the World Cup, better than the European Championships, it’s a fantastic tournament.

“But it’s not a golden period for us because we have lost two finals, so I don’t think it can be called a golden period.

“We have been consistent in the Champions League, our form away from home has been outstanding and we hope we can do better this year and win it, that’s the aim of this club all the time.”

Michael Owen and Dimitar Berbatov are likely to lead the attack against the Swiss club.

Roberto Mancini must decide whether to draft Carlos Tevez into his starting line-up for Manchester City’s Champions League encounter with Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena tonight.

After an opening-day draw with Napoli, City need a positive result to build on that solid start and with Mario Balotelli missing through suspension and Edin Dzeko without a goal in three games, Mancini may decide to pair Tevez with fellow Argentinian Sergio Aguero.