Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson believes his team’s home form will be key in deciding whether they can secure a 20th title. United lost ground in the title race on Wednesday with a 1-0 defeat at Wigan and Manchester City’s 4-0 win over West Bromwich Albion seeing their lead cut to five points. The champions’ lead could be reduced to two points when City travel to Norwich on Saturday, 24 hours before United entertain Aston Villa at Old Trafford.
United also host Everton and Swansea before the end of the season and must travel to City in the third last game of the season. After seeing his team’s eight-match winning run ended at the DW Stadium Ferguson thinks those home dates will be key in closing out the title. “Its been a great run and put us in a position where we can win the league,” Ferguson said. “We were well behind City a couple of months ago, they were 5/1 on and ahead on goal difference and points, so we have to take some credit for getting back in the race.
“It’s important to win our home games now. We’ll improve from this performance, I’m sure of that. “We wish our lead was better but considering where we were a couple of months ago we have to accept that somewhere along the line you will drop points. I said that weeks ago. “We pointed it out to the players that Wigan were under-rated and in a false position. “They were outstanding at Chelsea and dominated at Liverpool so we were under no illusions what a difficult game it was going to be but we just didn’t cope with it.”
Ferguson will also have a concern over Phil Jones, who limped through the closing stages of the game at Wigan, with United already having made their three substitutions. Meanwhile, Wigan manager Roberto Martinez dismissed speculation that he will leave the club as a free agent this summer.
Man Utd’s next three home matches...
* vs Aston Villa, April 15
* vs Everton, April 22
* vs Swansea City, May 5