Wednesday 17 October 2018

United fighting to the death

Fergie declares United won't give up on title until end after Giggs' memorable milestone

Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson believes yesterday's dramatic stoppage-time win at Norwich showed his side are ready to fight to the death for the Premier League title.

After seeing the Canaries battle back from falling behind to an early goal by Paul Scholes with a late equaliser from Grant Holt, the Red Devils surged forward in the closing stages at Carrow Road to eventually take all three points when Ryan Giggs stabbed home Ashley Young's cross deep into added time to cap a memorable end to his 900th appearance.

The win moved United back to within two points of leaders Manchester City, who turned over Blackpool 3-0 on Saturday.

Ferguson said: "I am sure this result will have an impact (on the season).

"Everyone knows we never give in, no matter who plays us. They know they will have to play right to the death."

He continued: "Norwich had more promise about them. I thought we were lethargic, too casual on the ball. Then when we lost the goal, we played brilliantly. That tells you something about the temperament -- they do not get nervous and started to up their game, so that augers well for us."

Ferguson confirmed duo Wayne Rooney and Tom Cleverley were ruled out of England's friendly against Holland on Wednesday through illness and injury, but hailed the impact of veteran duo Giggs and Scholes.

He said: "Given the career Ryan has had, to score the winning goal with the last kick of the game, I think he deserved that. He and Scholes are the best players this club has ever had."

Ferguson, however, accepted a draw would have not been an injustice for the hosts, who forced United keeper David de Gea into a string of fine saves.

He said: "They just kept crossing that ball into the box. Without Rio Ferdinand, Jonny Evans and De Gea, we would have been down. They were brilliant the three of them.

"Norwich deserved a point and it was a great goal they scored, but at that moment you saw us as Manchester United."

Giggs, 38, admitted it was a "real honour" to mark his 900th game with the winner. "It doesn't get any better," the Welshman said. "We have been in good form recently, gone to some tough places over the last three or four weeks and got some great performances. Today was more about the result than the performance."

The Canaries have consolidated themselves well on a first return to the top flight in the six seasons since last facing the Red Devils here, securing back-to-back promotions up from League One under Paul Lambert.

"That was a huge performance by us. We gave everything. We were running on empty, but I couldn't fault our lads," said the Norwich manager.

"It was a poor goal to lose but the pleasing thing was, when you lose that goal early, you don't capitulate, and we never did that.

"We hung in and the United goalkeeper probably saved his best game for against us -- some of his saves were magnificent."

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