AC Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti admits Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo have improved considerably since the 2005 meetings with Manchester United in the Champions League.
Next Wednesday AC Milan will look to overturn United's 3-2 first-leg lead when they play their second-leg Champions League semi-final with United at the San Siro.
The Italian side's coach believes Ronaldo and Rooney have made giant strides since Milan eliminated United from the 2005 competition.
Ancelotti said: 'Manchester United are clearly better than they were two years ago and are so much stronger up front, Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo are more experienced and more efficient.
'Before the game I would have settled for a 3-2 defeat (at Old Trafford) which is no bad result but there remains a little regret at how the result came about.'
Milan had led 2-1 with goals from Kaka after Cristiano Ronaldo had given United the lead.
Two goals from Rooney including a last-gasp winner then turned the match around.
Ancelotti claimed, however, that his midfield was as good as any in the world with Gennaro Gattuso, Andrea Pirlo, Massimo Ambrosini and Clarence Seedorf all impressing.
Asked about Gattuso, Ancelotti said: 'I would not change him or our whole midfield for any other team. They are all players who have great maturity.'
Ancelotti believes English football can teach a lot to Italy in terms of atmosphere.
Asked if he would like to coach in England, the coach said: 'I don't think so. I would rule nothing out but what I would really like to see is a good atmosphere in Italy like there is in English football.'
Ancelotti compared his 25-year-old playmaker Kaka favourably to Ronaldo and even Zinedine Zidane, whom he coached at Juventus.
The coach said: 'He (Kaka) must show on Wednesday he is the best - Cristiano Ronaldo shows great skill at high speed but what makes Kaka unique is how efficient he is.
'My main criticism of Zidane was that he did not always convert his talent into goals, maybe that's the difference. Zidane was superb but Kaka gets more goals.'
Ancelotti revealed he will rest many top players for this weekend's Serie A game with Torino in order to keep them fresh for Wednesday's return with United.