Evra focused on title

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Football News

Patrice Evra insists Manchester United will have no problem bouncing back from Thursday's 2-1 Europa League defeat to Athletic Bilbao, and says the players' focus is now firmly on retaining the Premier League title.

The 30-year-old Frenchman - who has captained Sir Alex Ferguson's side in the absence of Nemanja Vidic through injury - has emphasised the importance of securing domestic glory this year, or else the season will have been a disaster.

"A big club like Manchester United should be able to compete in every competition," Evra told "But now we have no choice, we have to focus on the league.

"We have to win the league to save our season. If we don't win the league, it will have been a really bad season."

Premature departures from the Champions League, League Cup and FA Cup competitions came prior to last night's surprise exit in San Mames, meaning the Red Devils will end the 2011-12 campaign without a cup final appearance for the first time since 2002.

But, with an important league match coming up against Wolves on Sunday, there is little time for the team to feel sorry for themselves, and will be quickly presented with an opportunity to get back to winning ways at Molineux.

"I'm not worried about the league because we are playing well and now we are top, in front of Manchester City," he continued. "After tonight we go home and rest, then focus on Wolves because it's a big game, a massive game and we have to make sure we win.

"We didn't start well in Europe this year - maybe we were too confident at the beginning of the Champions League - and this is the end now. We are out again and we have to be honest with ourselves, we don't deserve to be in the Champions League or the Europa League."

Asked to try and explain the reason behind United's loss of form in Europe, Evra admitted he had no definitive answer, but reiterated that he and his teammates will be doing everything they can to put things right next season.

"We haven't played in Europe this season with the same desire that we have in the league," he concluded. "We can see the difference in the league - we are top, and we are more focused on the league, we have to tell the truth.

"I don't know why that is. If I knew the answer, it wouldn't have happened. But it's a bad year in Europe for Manchester United. That's it."

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Europa League
Premier League
Manchester United
Patrice Evra

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