Antonio Valencia insists Manchester United will keep fighting in the Premier League, regardless of the club’s position in the table.
The Reds have occupied second place for much of the season but are currently 13 points behind Manchester City – a gap which could be widened before Jose Mourinho’s men face Newcastle United on Sunday, as the leaders host Leicester City in Saturday’s evening kick-off.
Ahead of this weekend’s trip to St James’ Park, Valencia insists the Reds must retain hope – making reference to the 2011/12 season, when United were pipped to the title by our cross-city rivals after letting an eight-point lead slip in the final six matches of the campaign - as an example of how quickly the situation can change.
“We need to keep fighting until the end – we need to keep going,” our no.25 stated, after the Reds beat Huddersfield Town 2-0 last Saturday.
“A few years ago, we lost a title when we were eight points ahead and there were only a few games left. Now, we have a lot more games to play and we need to keep fighting.”
The Reds bounced back from the defeat at Tottenham with a deserved win over Huddersfield at Old Trafford last weekend, and Valencia feels the players showed key attributes during the course of that victory.
“The important thing is always to get the three points – playing at home, playing well, and we will carry on with this mentality until the end of the season. We have showed that we have the quality and conditions to fight until the end of the season.”
The right-back has stepped up to be a capable stand-in skipper this season in the absence of captain Michael Carrick but Valencia has been focused on his own performances on the pitch to ensure he helps the team.
“I want to represent the team and I think I am doing it well, but the most important thing is that my team-mates are happy with me,” he said modestly.
Valencia is enjoying another impressive season so far and has added more goals to his game, having struck three times already this term – more than the previous three seasons combined.