Carrick On Chelsea

Michael Carrick hopes that his team mates can raise the standard still further against Chelsea on Wednesday night.
He admits the win over Southampton was not a vintage performance and says:
"We didn't play the best but we ground out the result which was most important.
"Even if you are not at your best, the good teams still get results and that's what we did by working hard.
"We knew it wasn't quite happening but we kept at it, knowing all we needed was a little break.
"It was just nice to get three points because there was a bit of pressure and a bit of tension.
"I didn't really feel it but it was just everyone putting it on from the outside; within the camp we knew we had the ability to perform and get the result."
Michael says he will be happy with more of the same against Chelsea but admits:
"If we play like that against Chelsea and get three points we'll be overjoyed; it's not really about the performance.
"But against a team with better individuals we probably will have to perform better."
Michael says there was a real determination to bounce back from the two heavy away defeats the side had encountered on their travels.
"To be fair, the manner we have lost the previous two games was disappointing," he admits.
"But we have shown that they were freak results and hopefully we can carry on playing as we did on Saturday."
Michael didn't play in the corresponding fixture last season; he was one of the players rested with the subsequent FA Cup tie against Tottenham in mind.
A severely depleted side lost 2-0 to the Blues, but Michael is determined to reverse the result this time around, especially with the memory of the Blackburn and Everton defeats still not diminished by the win at the weekend.
"We hadn't performed well in the previous two games and we just needed the crowd to get behind us from the off so we could relax and play - and we'll need their support again.
"We just need to build on that now and get three points tomorrow."
And Michael is backing his good friend Joe Cole's understudy, Laurent Courtois, to once again put on a good show on the left of midfield.
"Laurent has been on fire and I think the fans like him, so hopefully that continues," says Michael.
"But I don't think Joe is too far off so it's fingers crossed."