Michael Owen is hoping his playing opportunities at Manchester United come 'thick and fast' after scoring two goals on Wednesday night.
The former England striker opened his account for the season with a brace during United's 5-2 Carling Cup victory at Scunthorpe.
Red Devils manager Sir Alex Ferguson was not at Glanford Park having chosen to watch next week's UEFA Champions League opponents Valencia instead.
But assistant manager Mike Phelan, who was placed in charge for the evening, says Owen's efforts did not go unnoticed.
"Michael Owen did exceptionally well and showed what a top, top player he is," said Phelan.
"I thought he contributed to everything and he covered the ground extremely well."
Reports have suggested 30-year-old Owen, who prior to Wednesday evening had only managed 46 minutes of action since the Community Shield last month, has been unhappy with his lack of playing time at Old Trafford in recent weeks.
But the striker is expecting that to change as the season picks up pace.
"It's been a strange start to the season," said Owen.
"We've played weekend-weekend-weekend and then into a double-header international break so the manager's kept a similar team through those three games.
"Subsequently there's been a lot of us that haven't played in the first month of the season but now the Champions League's started, the League Cup's started and there's Premier League games all the time so I'd like to think there's going to be plenty of games coming thick and fast.
"People make a lot of different situations but there's a lot of us in the same boat that haven't had many minutes.
"It's a difficult juggling act for the manager because he's got young kids that he wants to bring through and learn a thing or two, then there's players that have been injured coming back into the action and players that need the games that have been fit, so it's par for the course at Manchester United.
"But it's a bit false at the minute because there have been so few games."
Owen, who has enjoyed League Cup success three times in the past, twice with former club Liverpool and once with United, was encouraged by the defeats of Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City on Wednesday.
"I've won it three times, it's been a good competition for me, and obviously Manchester United have won it for the last two years," he added.
"Looking at the results, there's a lot of big teams that have gone out so it's a satisfying result for us."