Belfast Telegraph

Ferguson hails 'unbelievable' result

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson declared that his side's "unbelievable" 3-1 victory at Tottenham proved they were ready to push Manchester City all the way in the Barclays Premier League title race.

United produced a trademark smash-and-grab performance to move back within two points of City at the top of the table in a game Ferguson described as his side's toughest on the road this season. Sunday's game was the last of a tough run of fixtures for the champions, who have a much easier run before travelling to the Etihad Stadium on April 30 for what could be a title decider.

Ferguson said: "We know exactly what we have to do. You can drop surprise points and I think both sides will, but the important thing is to drop less points than our opponents. A battling performance today tells you that we are up for it."

Ferguson admitted his side had been second best for most of the game. He added: "It's an entirely unbelievable result. I would say that's our hardest away game of the season. They'd only lost one game; it was their first home game, I think, against City, when they had a few injury problems. That was the magnitude of our challenge today.

"And, in fairness, the first half we were never at the races. Maybe we got our tactics wrong. What we tried to do was come back off them and sit back a little bit and draw them onto us and then play on the counter-attack. But it didn't work."

United scored completely against the run of play through Wayne Rooney before a sublime Ashley Young double sealed the points. Spurs boss Harry Redknapp was left at a loss to explain his side's defeat.

He said: "We played so well first half and to come in 1-0 down, it was unbelievable, really. We dominated the game, did absolutely everything I asked them to do. All over the park, I felt we dominated the game. Then we start the second half in exactly the same fashion.

"We get on top again and then we don't pick up from a throw-in and we we find ourselves two down when they've done nothing. They were there to be beaten today. I've not seen Alex on his feet as much for years, it wasn't going their way, but that's how it goes sometimes in football.

"You don't always get what you deserve and I don't think we did today. Today, I just thought they rode their luck. They did very little. I thought we dominated them. I thought we were better than them for most of the game. The two goals that put them 2-0 up were gifts.

"What has our keeper had to do? He's not had a shot to save. I'd be the first one to come here and say, 'We were poor today and they'd tanked us, they were different class to us', but I didn't see that today."


From Belfast Telegraph