Manchester United skipper Nemanja Vidic has warned that there is still a long way to go in the title race despite the Reds opening up a seven-point gap at the top of the table.
The Reds were far from impressive in defeating Southampton with a Wayne Rooney double and the Serbian accepts that the Southampton match became a real battle on Wednesday night.
With the result all important after Manchester City's draw at QPR, there will still be a determination to put on an improved collective performance at Fulham on Saturday.
"We had to fight to win this game at the end," Vidic admitted to MUTV. "You see we couldn't have possession of the ball and they were attacking all the time.
"Sometimes it's important to win this type of game. Obviously, the performance in the second half, we're not really pleased with, but I think we played some good football in the first half and had some good chances. All in all, we have to be pleased with the result. If you look at the other teams, they all drew, so we're in a good position now.
"We have to now focus for the next game against Fulham. Away games are always hard so we need to think about that. It's a good position we're in. It's important to win games, especially at this stage of the season, and every game now is important. We know that we have to forget the games that come before and always focus on the next ones. Nothing is finished yet. There is a long way to go but we're in a good position."
The defender feels there were positive elements to take out of the victory against the Saints as it again illustrated the team's ability to grind out three points.
"Of course you have to show character," he asserted. "Sometimes even when it's not happening for you. You have to defend and I think the whole team was pushed to the limits physically. It was a hard game and the pitch did not help.