Nemanja Vidic never had any doubt Manchester United would shrug off his season-ending absence and make a strong defence of their Barclays Premier League title.

When Vidic was stretchered off with ruptured cruciate ligaments against Basle in December as United crashed out of the Champions League, there were many who believed their entire campaign would be a disaster. However, less than four months on, United are now five points clear at the top of the table.

Speaking exclusively to Press Association Sport, the Serbian, who is still sidelined, is taking pride in his team-mate's achievements. He said: "I always believed we would challenge for the title."

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