Bring on the semi-final derby
Our two games against Manchester City in the Carling Cup semi-final are massive for us. It is a competition we have done well in over the past couple of years, and no doubt they will want to do well too.
It's a local derby and one of the biggest games we have played against City for a long time. Certainly we expect it to be a difficult game. They are in good form, and it's always difficult away against City. We will have to be at our best on Tuesday for the game at their ground.
Because we were away in Qatar for warm weather training last week, we haven't really sensed the anticipation building in Manchester around the game. Besides, we never think two games ahead, so we were concentrating on the Burnley game last week. We have to be professional and keep our focus. But the City game is one that we definitely want to win and we will be focusing on it from today.
I've only seen one of City's games since Roberto Mancini took over as manager - their 3-0 victory against Wolves. It was a decent match and they definitely have quality in forward positions. Craig Bellamy has been playing well, as have Martin Petrov and Carlos Tevez, who was excellent against Wolves. City impressed me in that game, but I haven't seen a great deal of them.
I don't see the game as an opportunity to reassert our dominance over City; we're quite comfortable with where we are. We are second in the league, we're in the Carling Cup semi-final and we're in the second phase of the Champions League, so we have nothing to prove.
People might perceive that something is going on in Manchester between the two clubs, but we can't afford to get involved in that. We just need to concentrate on our jobs like we've always done. We've had battles with our rivals like Leeds and Liverpool over the years for the top honours, and we just concentrate on our own performance. There is no way we can start to concern ourselves with other teams too much.
Don't write off 'big four' just yet
I wrote last week that everyone says it's a crisis at Manchester United when we have one or two bad results, and maybe it's a similar situation at Liverpool.
When you have poor results at big clubs, like Liverpool did against Reading and we did against Leeds, then you will get criticism. You just have to expect it. There is a great expectation to always win games at big clubs, and you certainly don't expect to lose against lower opposition. That's why we were so disappointed to lose against Leeds, and it brought us justified criticism. But on the other hand, did it constitute a crisis? I'm not sure I'd go that far.
One of the reasons for Liverpool's form could be that teams like Manchester City, Aston Villa and Tottenham Hotspur have all improved. Ourselves, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool have all lost more games than we would have expected - we've already lost more games than last season, and so have Liverpool. The quality of the teams around us has improved and it's caught us a little bit by surprise.
It's a strange league, and the 'big four' have not cemented their positions this year like they usually do. Villa, City and Spurs have been strong and have a real chance of breaking into it. Have Liverpool underperformed or have the rest of teams have got better? We will have to see how the table looks at the end of the season.
I still think that when push comes to shove, Arsenal, Chelsea, ourselves and Liverpool will come to the fore and finish strongly. These teams have a history of producing when it matters. There is definitely a challenge to the 'big four' this year but there is a long way to go. A few weeks ago people were ready to award Chelsea the championship; now people aren't so sure. People are asking if Manchester City could be champions.
It really is changing from week to week at the moment, so I wouldn't be so quick to make predictions on a week-by-week basis. It's always the same - we need to look at the situation in March. I have faith in the ability of our squad to produce in the latter stages of the season, although I'm sure other teams will say the same.
Club finances none of our business
All the speculation about the finances at Manchester United does not affect the players. We're always very well protected and we never get involved in the financial side of things.
There have been talks and rumours over the years going back to when the Glazers took over, and even when Michael Knighton nearly took over in the 1980s. As players we never get involved in those things; our job is purely on the pitch and we allow people who are paid to do jobs in other areas of the club to do their job. It's nothing to do with us at all.
Over to you
Was it a mistake to let Carlos Tevez leave Manchester United and do you think United should buy a striker in this transfer window? John Refalo, Attard
The manager over the years has made many decisions with regard to players coming and going, and he has almost always been proved correct.
Over a period of 20 years he may have got one or two wrong, and I think he has admitted that himself, but he knows exactly what he's doing and he understands when a player's time is up.
I can't disagree with his decision on Tevez. He was a good player for us, but if the financial demands are too big then that's just the way it goes. Other good players have left this club in the past; it's not the first time it's happened.
Should he sign a striker? Well, the manager will sign players when he wants to. He has never been a great fan of signing players in January so I'm not sure he will sign anyone this month.
At the end of the season he will assess the situation and do what is right for the club.
We have the best manager in the world at putting teams together - he's done it successfully for 20 years. There have not been many people who have questioned him over the years and been proved right.
Send your questions to Gary Neville to [email protected].