Sir Alex Ferguson: I never assumed Premier League was won

The Red Devils' boss insists that despite Roberto Mancini’s claim and City’s slump in past weeks the title race was far from over but is backing United's experience to be decisive

Sir Alex Ferguson has admitted that he never felt the Premier League title race was over, despite Manchester City’s apparent surrender at Arsenal last weekend.

United has since suffered a shock 1-0 defeat away to Wigan whilst City has responded to its loss at the Emirates with emphatic wins over West Brom and Norwich to cut the current gap to just two points.

But their resurgence has come as no surprise to Sir Alex, who told the Sunday Telegraph: “We had six games to go, six games left to play, and I would never think that it’s over, not in the fact that we still had difficult league games at Wigan, City and Sunderland.”

The 70-year-old has highlighted United’s home game with Everton as another tough fixture in its run-in, but has faith in his side’s mental strength to see them through.

“Everton at home is against one of the better form teams in the league at the moment so we know it’s a hard job and that’s what the league’s about," he added. "We know that it’s hard at the start and hard at the end.

“I don’t have any doubts about their temperament. I think there’s enough experience in the place.”

Sir Alex also conceded that twists and turns are just part of a title run-in and recalled their battle with Liverpool in 2009.

“It happens and we’re aware of that," he said. "Two or three years ago Liverpool beat us 4-1 at Old Trafford remember? And that genius [Rafael] Benitez said that they planned to beat us by playing long balls behind us.”

He also confirmed that Paul Scholes will return to the side after being rested for their midweek trip to Wigan.

“He’s back and that’s important," added Sir Alex. "We gave him 20 minutes so we’ll consider him for Sunday. He’s a good player, tough too, always wants the ball.”

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