van gaal is still on a title mission
United boss: We can catch Chelsea
LOUIS Van Gaal is not ruling out an 11th hour tilt by Manchester United to snatch the Premier League title from under the nose of Jose Mourinho.
When asked if his team could overtake leaders Chelsea, who lead United by eight points, Van Gaal said: "Mathematically, we can still do it.''
If the Red Devils can beat Villa today and Arsenal fail to beat Liverpool, the Red Devils will move up to second ahead of Manchester City, who play Crystal Palace on Monday.
Being so high in the table would have been unthinkable during the early stages of Van Gaal's reign, but he is good spirits as United head into the home straight.
"I have a good feeling that we can continue against Aston Villa,'' he said.
"I said when we had 13 points from 11 games and we were getting a lot of criticism that we would see at the end of the season.
"It is still a rat race. Also Tottenham and Liverpool are still in it.
"We have given them a blow but we have to play against the first three still. A lot can still happen.''
It was expected that Robin Van Persie would return this weekend after the international break, but Van Gaal said the Holland striker has still not fully recovered from the ankle injury he suffered against Swansea on February 21.
Chris Smalling is a major doubt and his most likely replacement is Marcos Rojo, although he and Angel di Maria only returned to England on Thursday from South America. Luke Shaw, however is fully fit after a hamstring problem.
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