Cape Town - Manchester
United midfielder Juan Mata insists the Red Devils are still in a good
position to challenge Manchester City for the Premier League title.
The arch rivals are preparing for a top-of-the-table clash on Sunday
when they lock horns in the Manchester derby at Old Trafford, and Mata
is hoping to make the most of the opportunity to reduce the eight-point
lead City enjoy over United.
"We are doing what we have to do," said Mata, as quoted by the Evening Standard.
"We would love to be first in the table right now but I think we are doing lots of good things.
"Now, especially on Sunday and during Christmas time, which we all
know how difficult it is to win every single game, we need to keep that
pace if we want to be in a position to challenge for the title at the
end of the season. Hopefully we can do it."
United will face Bournemouth, West Brom, Leicester, Burnley, and
Southampton before their first game of 2018, against Everton on January
Mata added: "If we arrive in a position where we want to be in
February or March then we can think about 'we won on Saturday and they
won on Sunday'.
"It's not the best feeling but we think about the bigger picture and
for us we have to keep up the pace and keep winning and winning.
"It's very difficult, especially in the Premier League.
"I remember a few seasons ago when United were ahead of City and then
they won by goals. It's a crazy league and it's too early to think that
"From City they will tell you the same."
Kick off is at 18:30.