No excuses from Phelan
Man Utd coach Mike Phelan has refused to use European commitments as an excuse for domestic failings.
By Chris Burton
Last Updated: 04/04/10 1:50pm
Manchester United assistant manager Mike Phelan has refused to use European commitments as an excuse for domestic failings.
The Red Devils saw their Premier League title dreams dealt an untimely blow on Saturday when they went down 2-1 to rivals Chelsea.
That setback, four days after a gruelling UEFA Champions League encounter away at Bayern Munich, has put the Blues back in the driving seat.
Chelsea's early exit from continental competition allowed them to be much fresher heading into the crunch contest at Old Trafford, but Phelan insists United cannot blame a hectic schedule for the disappointing result.
"I am sure Chelsea would have preferred to be in Europe rather than out of it but it is quite testing when you play away in Europe and then have to come back and play an early kick-off," he said.
"But we have done it many times before. We can't moan about it. That is the fixture list. We have to get on with it."
Meanwhile, Nemanja Vidic has urged his team-mates to pick themselves up after the weekend defeat and focus their energies on overhauling Chelsea at the summit.
"We were down after the Bayern game but we cannot afford to be down again," said the Serbian.
"We need to get our heads up and face the facts.
"We have lost two games but we shouldn't feel sorry for ourselves.
"We need to seize the moment and make sure we finish well this season."
Vidic feels a 100 per cent record heading down the final stretch could still be enough for United to land the title, but accepts they are relying on others to do them a favour.
"Chelsea have just the league and the FA Cup to focus on, which helps them, but if we win all five games then we still have a good chance," he said.
"I hope there will be more twists and turns and there will be more dropped points before the end."