fast little loans
By Angus MacKinnon
Cardiff - Sir Alex Ferguson has voiced confidence that he is capable of building another great Manchester United side and that he will be given the time to do it by the Glazers, the club's American owners.
The Scot was in bullish mood after watching Wayne Rooney mastermind a 4-0 win over Wigan Athletic in the League Cup final which ensured he would not have to endure a second consecutive season without a trophy.
The triumph in a competition Ferguson has treated with disdain for most of his time at Old Trafford will provide only limited consolation for the fact that Chelsea have virtually wrapped up a second consecutive Premiership title and for United's early exits from the Champions League and the FA Cup this season.
But Ferguson claimed any suggestion that the security of his position was linked to the outcome of Sunday's final was wide of the mark.
"The trouble with the press is that they get nothing from the club. The Glazers are in America and they get nothing from (chief executive) David Gill, no little snippets from people high up in the club.
"So the invention and the imagination is amazing now. They don't have a bloody clue these guys (the press)."
Wigan, appearing in the first major final of the club's history, were comfortably beaten, but Ferguson insisted the 4-0 scoreline was harsh on Paul Jewell's side.
"We put up a good attacking performance," he said. "There were moments when we had to defend very well. Wigan set out their stall to attack us and it was one of those games where, if you don't score, you could lose it."
Wigan boss Paul Jewell admitted his side had been outclassed at times and had paid for their commitment to taking the game to their opponents.
"At 1-0 we still had half a chance and their keeper made a really good save from Henri Camara to deny us an equaliser.
"If we get to 1-1 then you never know but we were up against a very good team. There has been all this talk about United being weak in midfield but we didn't buy into that. They are still one of the best teams in Europe."
Despite his disappointment, Jewell was quick to put Wigan's final appearance into the context of what has been an extraordinary season, his squad having established themselves in the top half of the Premiership.
"We've got beaten by United in the final. Last season we went out to Grimsby, so we have come a long way.
"I'm disappointed but I'm proud of my players, staff and the supporters. I hate losing but in the grand scheme of things this season Wigan have won."
Despite the troubles they have had this season, Ferguson is optimistic about the potential of his young squad and he stressed the importance of Sunday's victory for recent signings Nemanja Vidic and Patrice Evra, who appeared as late substitutes once the game was won.
"I wanted to give them the experience of being on a winning side and a taste of the atmosphere at the end of a big game. Hopefully that tells them something about being a Manchester United player and gives them an instinct for winning.
"I hope that this squad can match our exploits of the past. If we can keep this group together and they can grow up together, they have a chance.
"The competition is harder than ever, in the Premiership and in Europe. Hopefully this team will stay together and get more experienced."
At the centre of Ferguson's plans for the future is Wayne Rooney, whose appetite for the big stage was underlined by a man-of-the-match performance and his two goals, securing his first medal since become a United player in the summer of 2004.
Rooney already struck the bar with a header and Louis Saha had squandered three good chances before the England forward put United ahead in the 33rd minute, a collision between Wigan defenders Arjan de Zeeuw and Pascal Chimbonda having presented him with a clear run at goal.
United goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar made a signicant save just after the interval, beating out Henri Camara's fierce shot at his near post after the Senegal forward had nut-megged Rio Ferdinand.
But Ferguson's men responded to that scare in ruthless fashion, killing the game off with three goals in six minutes.
Saha finished off a sweeping move from close range for United's second then delivered the pass which allowed Ronaldo to fire in a low right-foot drive from just inside the area.
Rooney then claimed his second, sweeping a close-range shot into the net after a Ryan Giggs free-kick had been knocked on by Saha and Ferdinand in quick succession.