While the group stage draw in the Champions League could have been more difficult for United, it nevertheless will be far from a walk in the park either.
When analysing the task faced in order to grab one of the two qualifying spots, there are more factors to consider than just the pedigree of their opponents.
A possible cold night in Moscow following a long flight is never pleasant. Turkey has been a difficult place to visit for anyone who had to play there while the champions of Germany have traditionally always been tough.
The fixtures in the Premer League must also be kept in mind. The away match at Besiktas follows what promises to be a tricky game with Tottenham Hotspur in London the previous weekend and is followed by the local derby against City at Old Trafford. A crucial week to say the least!
A home game against Bolton precedes the long trip to Moscow then have to travel to Anfield for the big Liverpool clash.
Finally we have a home game against Blackburn, at home again to face Moscow midweek before going to Stamford Bridge for another critical 90 minutes against Chelsea.
Phew! What a frenetic couple of months coming up! If Sir Alex can successfully guide his team through the group stages in Europe AND maintain a strong Premiership challenge, United fans may be in for a hell of a season ONCE AGAIN.
United’s Group Stage Fixtures
Tuesday 15 September: Besiktas (A)
Wednesday 30 September: Wolfsburg (H)
Wednesday 21 October: CSKA Moscow (A)
Tuesday 3 November: CSKA Moscow (H)
Wednesday 25 November: Besiktas (H)
Tuesday 8 December: Wolfsburg (A)