Football: United will benefit from warm weather break, says Moyes

MANCHESTER (REUTERS) - Manchester United hope to feel the immediate benefit of a warm weather break in the Middle East before two important games in the next four days, manager David Moyes said on Friday.

Having been knocked out of the FA Cup earlier this season, United took advantage of a rare free weekend to spend five days in Dubai. They returned to prepare for a Premier League game away to Crystal Palace on Saturday and the first leg of the Champions League round-of-16 tie away to Olympiakos Piraeus on Tuesday.

"It's great that we had some time together with the players - the first time I've really had the chance to have a few days with the lads," Moyes told reporters at his weekly press briefing on Friday.

"We play at 1730GMT and then again on Tuesday night, but we'll be ready. There's a squad here that's used to being rotated. That's why United have often been strong at the end of the season."

The Premier League champions are 15 points behind leaders Chelsea (57 points) after a disappointing season so far under Moyes and 11 points away from the four Champions League places.

They face a Palace side who have been revitalised by new manager Tony Pulis, winning their last three home games to move out of the relegation places.

"Tony always has his sides well organised and well drilled," Moyes said. "He's doing a great job with them."

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