Ex-Reds goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel is impressed with the focus of Manchester United’s players this season and the general sense of positivity surrounding the club – key ingredients to success, according to the Dane.
As United no.1, Schmeichel never let his back four lose concentration as he barked orders from the penalty box, so he is pleased to see United showing focus on the task at hand: setting about reclaiming the Barclays Premier League title.
“There’s a real focus about United this season,” the Dane told the Reds’ matchday programme United Review. “Last year we had an eight-point lead in the Premier League and lost it, and I don’t think I’ve seen us lose such a lead before, especially so close to the end of the season.
“The manager has given a clear message to the players that he won’t accept it happening again. I’d say that message has been heeded.”
There have been signs recently, particularly in the league, of getting the job done. Victories against Southampton, Fulham and Everton urged Sir Alex to describe his players against the latter of those opponents as having “their championship-winning heads on right from the off”.
“The win at Fulham two weeks ago was the kind of game we probably would have lost last season,” Schmeichel adds. “There’s a definite sense that lessons have been learned, and that’s key if we’re to pick up silverware this season.
“We’ve done really well in the Premier League and have built a very nice cushion, and if United do go on to win the title this season then it sends out a hell of a message. It shows that we can bounce back from the way last season ended – which was really tough to take – and we can do so with a mixture of young players we’ve brought through and big players that we’ve brought in.
“I saw an interview with Robin van Persie the other week and I found it fascinating. He was talking about how he is inspired by training at Carrington, that every time he looks around he sees top-level players and seasoned winners like Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes.