Gary Neville felt it was vital to keep Besiktas’ vociferous following quiet as Manchester United opened their 2009-10 Champions League campaign with a 1-0 win in Istanbul tonight.
Fellow veteran Paul Scholes nodded home a 77th-minute winner, latching onto the rebound after Hakan Arikan had denied Nani.
The crowd had given the home side tremendous backing and Neville admitted it would have been a different story if they had been given a goal to cheer.
He told Sky Sports: “They create an atmosphere like no other country in Europe. If they had got a goal it would have been a really hard night for us.
“It was difficult, coming away in European football is always really hard but this result puts us in a good position.”
Matchwinner Scholes added: “It was nice to score – any away game in the Champions League is difficult especially in Turkey. I don’t think this was our best game, but a win is a win.”
United boss Alex Ferguson told Sky Sports: "Being the first game you always want to win that but I was quite comfortable with the performance.
“I thought they did quite well most of the time, kept good possession. We were the better team, the concentration had to be good because it was a fantastic atmosphere and a test of the concentration and a test of the nerves.”