Sir Alex Ferguson challenges Manchester United to become the 'Invincibles'

19 February 2009 10:41
The world, European and Premier League champions are now best priced at just 14-1 by the bookmakers to complete an unprecedented quintuple this season by adding the Carling Cup, Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League trophies to the Fifa Club World Cup won in Japan two months ago.

Wednesday's 3-0 victory against Fulham lifted United five points clear of closest rivals Liverpool in the race for the championship and that lead will become eight points by Saturday evening if Ferguson's team defeat Blackburn at home ahead of Liverpool's game with Manchester City at Anfield on Sunday.

But with United on a 10-game winning streak in all competitions and goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar now unbeaten in 14 consecutive league games, the prospects of an historic end to the season at Old Trafford are now increasing.

Ferguson, whose team were described as "untouchable" by Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger last week, has raised the bar ever higher for his players by insisting that they target wins in all of their remaining fixtures this season.

Ferguson said: "We are in excellent form. We may not win every game between now and May, but that will be our aim. There is a mental toughness about the team these days and that will stand us in good stead as the pressure builds.

"This current group of players has been together for a couple of seasons and they have developed strong bonds and, as we enter the final months of the season, I think we are going to take some beating."

United have not dropped points in the league since a 0-0 draw at Tottenham on Dec 13, with the Carling Cup semi-final first-leg reverse at Derby on Jan 7 their only defeat in 25 outings in all competitions.

Next Tuesday's Champions League date with Italian champions Inter Milan in the San Siro will provide a stern test of United's quintuple hopes, but despite the confidence generated by the recent run, Ferguson insists that complacency will not be an issue.

He said: "You can never be dead sure because things can happen. We were 12 points ahead of Arsenal back in 1997/98 and then we lost the league.

"We had a lot of injuries that season, though, and hopefully with the squad we've got now, we can cope with injuries like we have done in the last few weeks."

Source: Telegraph