Paul Scholes has given the Carling Cup his seal of approval even though it could be one of the reasons why England perform so badly at major tournaments. It was generally acknowledged that the sheer weight of matches is one of the prime reasons Fabio Capello's team put in abject performances in South Africa.
Although most of Europe are using this midweek to play matches, it is either for a league fixture that will allow a gap to be created later in the season, or for cup competitions they tend not to give much importance to.
In England it marks the first step towards a Wembley final on February 27, and for Manchester United the chance to collect the trophy for the third year running.
However, no-one needs reminding the competition provided two of the biggest nights of United's entire season last year; the two-legged semi-final with Manchester City.
And it is the prospect of playing in such fixtures that will ensure Scholes takes a keen interest in the outcome.
"I would prefer to be playing mega games than be sat at home watching them," said Scholes.
"You do get high intensity games in the Carling Cup and maybe in other countries, cup competitions are not as important.
"But it is in our nature to want to win every game.
"Winning trophies is all about getting to the later stages of competitions and having big games at the end of them. We want to win this, just as we want to win every other tournament we enter."