Manchester United defender Chris Smalling has spoken of how he and his United team mates are determined to make sure they do not make the same mistakes as last season and let the title slip from their grasp.
Many will remember that United led the league by eight points with less than a month of the season to go and capitulated, allowing two late goals against Everton and losing to Manchester City in the run-in as they lost the title on goal difference.
Smalling told the official Manchester United website: “The 15-point lead looks good now but we go away to join up with our national teams and hopefully everyone can come back fit because we then have two big games against Sunderland and Chelsea.”
It will be a big week for United as they look to overcome the crushing disappointment of being eliminated from the champions league by Real Madrid in that controversy laden second leg at Old Trafford.
The hangover from that tie looked to affect the players after the FA Cup tie at Old Trafford as Chelsea were allowed to battle back from an early two goal deficit to force a replay at Stamford Bridge on Easter Monday.
Smalling admitted just how big the FA Cup replay will be after the international break in not only advancing to a semi-final clash against Manchester City, but in building further confidence for the Premier League run in.
He continued by saying: “That could be a key edge in terms of how the league and cup goes. So that will be a big few days for us.”
After last year’s poor run against Everton and stumble at the Etihad allowed for those now famous final minute Sergio Aguero heroics, Smalling is determined to make sure that he and his team mates remain completely focused.
“It’s a massive incentive for us to hold onto this lead, it’s a bigger lead than last year but we can’t rest on our laurels and we want to make sure we finish the job this season.”
If they can hold onto the lead United will increase their record of English League titles to 20 and will deliver the sweetest of revenge to their cross town rivals, who denied them so dramatically last season.
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