Many has expected United boss Sir Alex Ferguson to field his strongest line-up against City.
“We will continue to use a certain set of players that we have done in the past,” Phelan said.
“We never go into a football match looking to lose a football match. But our policy has been to give young talented players the opportunity to play in competition.
“This is just another step for them.”
“It is great to be playing Manchester City. It will add some spice and will get things buzzing around the city,” he added.
“But the fact is we are in the semi-final of a cup competition and it is an opportunity to get to a final.
“There is no point coming this far not to get there – and this club loves finals.”