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Nov 29, 2008

Evra: United unconcerned by City's nouveau riche

Manchester United defender Patrice Evra insists no feathers have been ruffled at Old Trafford by the Abu Dhabi United Group's takeover of Manchester City this summer.

The newly-acquired financial clout at Eastlands has increased expectations of Mark Hughes' side, with the deadline-day acquisition of £32.5million record signing Robinho proving they are now a force to be reckoned with in the transfer marker at least.

But Evra claims the Barclays Premier League and European champions are not concerned about events in the blue half of the city.

"We don't speak very much about City in the dressing room," the 27-year-old told L'Equipe magazine ahead of tomorrow's first Manchester derby of the campaign.

"I haven't heard anybody say: 'Oh la la. From now on, they are the richest club in the world'. Us, we know our history."

Evra made his United debut at Eastlands after signing from Monaco for £5million in January 2006, and it is not a day he recalls with particular fondness.

He was sick before the game as he unsuccessfully tried to digest a plateful of pasta ahead of the lunchtime kick-off. And once the match started it got even worse.

United lost 3-1, with Evra substituted at half-time having taken a fearful battering from Trevor Sinclair.

The Frenchman said: "For me, it is a peculiar thing with City - it was my first match in the Premier League.

"It was my biggest feeling since I arrived here. I remember getting a stud in the eye. We lost 3-1. Ferguson brought me off at half-time, saying to me, 'Patrice, go and watch the match, and learn about English football'.

"It is a true derby, especially for the fans. City are five minutes from our training ground. We can sense them."

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