Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson has helped Barnsley prepare for their FA Cup tie with Manchester City.

The Sun says Fergie has given Tykes chief David Flitcroft tactical advice, allowed Barnsley to use United's training ground and sent United coach Rene Meulensteen to give a rousing talk to the Championship strugglers ahead of today's quarter-final at the Etihad.

Barnsley midfielder Tomasz Cywka said: "This week has been crazy.

"We trained at United's training ground and Alex Ferguson actually offered a huge amount of help.

"He welcomed us and offered our manager his full support."