Upson keeps level head

The arrival of the reigning champions may be seen as the highlight of the season for most but for Matthew Upson it is just one of 38 big games.

The reliable 28-year-old stalwart of the West Ham United defence will approach the visit of Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney and, of course, Carlos Tevez with the same focus and commitment that he gives to each West Ham United fixture. "For me, I think every game is a big game - whether or not you are playing Chelsea or Derby," he said.

"Every game is only worth three points, so they are all the same. The only thing surrounding Manchester United is there will be a lot more hype because it is Manchester United. I think it is wrong in a way if players just want to get up for those kinds of games, because that is not really the bread and butter of the whole season."

Upson knows the Hammers need to get their home performances going along the same lines as the impressive away displays - especially if the club wants to push on from a respectable tenth-placed position at the halfway point of the season."It is the only thing missing at the moment," the seven-times capped England defender said.

While last Wednesday's 1-1 home draw against Reading was evidence of the need for better at the Boleyn Ground, it will not be a case of special treatment or preparation this afternoon - regardless of the opposition. "We need to approach every game with the same focus, the same mentality and play as well and work as hard against Manchester United as what we would have done against Reading."