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"It’ll be said a thousand times to other players after me that it’s never enough to win a league title medal at Manchester United. It doesn’t suddenly make you a United great."

- Paul Parker, ManUtd.com

07/02/2013 17:11, Report by Adam Marshall
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Parker: Title challenge

Former United defender Paul Parker believes the Reds will prove to be stronger than Manchester City in the title race.

Sir Alex Ferguson's side are taking absolutely nothing for granted but currently enjoy a healthy lead at the Barclays Premier League summit approaching a difficult assignment against Everton on Sunday.

City have amassed an impressive 53-point tally, losing only twice all season in the league, but remain adrift due to United's best-ever haul at this stage of a Premier League campaign. Nonetheless, Parker feels the champions are finding it difficult to come to terms with the extra responsibility of trying to retain the trophy.

"Nine points is a big gap at the moment and everything suggests City should not be able to catch up," Parker told ManUtd.com. "Anything can happen as the old saying goes but City, in my opinion, haven't really evolved as champions in the sense that you have to show something different in the following season.

"Everyone knows how good you are and respects that but opponents and fans are expecting something extra to be added to the squad. When we lost the league in 1992, Dion Dublin came in so we could go more direct if we were in trouble but the most important thing was, from November, the boss added Eric Cantona so we could play in a different way with a different dimension in the final third.

"It opened the door for us and mostly the same players from the previous season were finding the ball in front of them more. Denis Irwin scored more goals, Mark Hughes suddenly didn’t have three players trying to stop him, Brian McClair moved into a different role, Paul Ince and Bryan Robson played differently, and even Paul Parker scored a goal! Things changed.

"We won that first title and then Sir Alex made a bigger signing, definitely in terms of price, with Roy Keane in 1993. Roy was a different player and added a new dimension but, this time, in the centre of the park. He was just as effective tracking back in the defending third as he was going

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