London, Jan 19(ANI): Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson admits that Manchester City is a genuine threat to his club's dominance ahead of the teams' Carling Cup semi-final.
The two teams meet at Eastlands on Tuesday in the first leg of an eagerly-awaited tie, Roberto Mancini's cash-rich side is looking to qualify for their first major domestic final since 1981.
"You have to recognize that they are a competitor now. They are making a much better fist of their league programme this season than they have done in the past. We have had to wait a long time for it to be like that," The Daily Express quoted Ferguson, as saying.
"Given the amount of money they have you would have to say anything is possible, but I'm proud of our history and our ability to handle any challenges," he added.
Ferguson believes that Tuesday's game against City is more important than the derby factor.
"It's a popular argument that the Manchester derby means more to City. As far as I'm concerned it is a semi-final. It doesn't matter how many finals you have played in, they are always occasions you want to do well in. That is what is important," he said. (ANI)