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Manchester United Football Club

  • Nickname:Red Devils
  • Founded:1878
  • Manager:Louis van Gaal
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Fergie plays down Chelsea's start

24 Sep 2010 - 08:22:42

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson has shrugged off Chelsea's impressive start to the new season after claiming the fixture list has been kind on the reigning champions.

Chelsea are four points clear of both United and Arsenal following a 100 per cent start to the new campaign.

The toughest test of their season to date is likely to come against ambitious Manchester City at Eastlands on Saturday.

However, Ferguson has taken a swipe at the Stamford Bridge club after claiming that fixtures against the likes of West Bromwich Albion, Wigan Athletic, Stoke City, West Ham United and Blackpool have been kind.

"I think Chelsea chose the calendar themselves," he told Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport.

"It's been a quite amazing start for them but you still have to beat those teams and Chelsea have done that in quite a strong fashion.

"They finished last season scoring a lot of goals against the weaker teams and have continued that way.

"Anyone who wins the league will have to finish above them."

Meanwhile, Ferguson expects City to join the elite group of clubs challenging for a top four finish and a place in the Champions League this season.

"City did not have the strongest start of the season, but you have to think that with the squad they have they will be there," he added.

"I saw the Liverpool game (a 3-0 victory) and they're going to be a big challenge, the power they have, the big lads in the team.

"Roberto Mancini bought half a team in the summer, which will not be easy to bed down, but if they get continuity they'll certainly be a threat."

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