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Jul 12, 2013

Emerton to lead All Stars against Man U

A-League All Stars captain Brett Emerton knows what it's like to both win and lose against Manchester United, the team he will confront one more time next Saturday.

The experienced Sydney FC midfielder has played several times against the current English Premier League champions, including twice for the Socceroos when they last toured Australia 14 years ago.

"We got beaten both times and I remember chasing the ball quite a lot," Emerton told AAP.

Emerton enjoyed some success against the English glamour club during his time with English Premier League side Blackburn Rovers.

"I've had some positive results against them, I've beaten them a couple of times at old Ewood Park (Blackburn's home ground) and also beaten them at Old Trafford and got on the scoresheet a couple of times," Emerton recalled.

All Stars coach Ange Postecoglou said Emerton epitomised what the A-League was about.

"He's played at the highest level overseas and played for his national team and played here in our own league," he said.

"He's the kind of person that shows the growth of our competition and he's a good person as well.

"I'm sure with his experience of having played at the level we're going to be playing at on Saturday night, will help some of the other guys."

Both Emerton and Postecoglou warned the recent appointment of manager David Moyes would ensure the United players would be up for the game in Sydney as they tried to make an impression on their new boss.

United captain Nemanja Vidic and England striker Wayne Rooney will be among the handful of injured players who haven't made the trip to Australia.

Postecoglou wasn't convinced the absence of those players would make United any easier to beat.

"Sometimes those kind of things work as a motivating force for the players coming in," Postecoglou said.

"I'm sure the players who replace Rooney and Vidic will be looking to try and get into the new manager's eyes and make sure that they are part of the new season, so there won't be a lack of incentive for them to do well."

Postecoglou was philosophical about taking on United without all the players in the Socceroos squad for the East Asian Cup in South Korea starting next weekend.

"That's coaching, whether it's at club level or international level, you never get everyone you want," Postecoglou said.

"Obviously when you are pulling guys from different clubs together and different styles it will be a big challenge this week to get them all heading in the right direction. But that's the bit I'm looking forward to."

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