Back in January, when Manchester United had just lost 2-0 at home against Burnley, it was incomprehensible that we would be in the position we currently are going in to the last game of the season. We were six points behind Chelsea in fourth and 14 points behind third placed Leicester. What was the most pressing concern was how close the teams below us were, with Spurs and Wolves on the same number of points and Sheffield United one point behind. Another couple of bad results could have seen us fall dramatically down the table.
However, United are unbeaten in the 13 games that followed though, collecting more points than any other team in the league, as we’ve moved up to third place. A win against Leicester on Sunday guarantees that is the position we’ll finish in (unless Chelsea beat Wolves by 16 goals or more!), while a draw could mean we keep third, depending on Chelsea’s result.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has told the press he has every intention of going out for a win and, if we do finish third, can be proud of the progress we’ve made on this leg of his journey as manager.
Let’s get this game out of the way and get third position and continue the growth and the journey this team’s on. Of course we’ve had some hard times this season, some setbacks, but I think we’ve shown and we’ve proved that this is a team going places. If we get a result against Leicester, I think everyone will say that this journey has been a good one. But then again, this is not the end of the journey. If you get there, it’s not ‘breathe and relax’, it’s ‘go again’. We know there are two teams too far ahead of us, so we have to step it up even more.
Solskjaer believes we have dropped points in game since the re-start that we otherwise would have won if fans had been inside Old Trafford. However, we do benefit from not having to play against the Leicester crowd on Sunday whose fans are as desperate for a win as ours are.
I think the players have just got used to this situation and we’ve just got to get on with it. The fans would have made a big difference, of course they would have, at both home and away games. Football without the fans, for me, is not the same. They’re a part of football because we are together and it should be with the fans.
That passion, enthusiasm, energy, maybe we needed to go the extra mile against West Ham or to defend the last-ditch goal against Southampton. I think it would have made a difference because our fans are the best at Old Trafford. There’s no better place to chase goals. But we’ll get there again. I think we’ve given our fans something to look forward to.
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