Michael Owen rates Man United’s title prospects

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Michael Owen has poured cold water on talk of Manchester United winning the Premier League title this season.

The Red Devils gave their title prospects on boost on New Year’s Day thanks to a 2-1 win over Aston Villa at Old Trafford as they moved level on points with Premier League leaders Liverpool FC.

Anthony Martial’s first-half opener was cancelled out by Bertrand Traore before Bruno Fernandes netted from the penalty spot in the second half to seal the three points for the home side.

Manchester United are unbeaten since a 1-0 loss to Arsenal at Old Trafford at the start of November to put defending champions Liverpool FC under pressure at the top of the division.

Solskjaer is the first manager since Sir Alex Ferguson to have Manchester United in second place in the Premier League table on New Year’s Day.

Manchester United will have the opportunity to cast further doubt on an injury-ravaged Liverpool FC side’s chances of retaining their title this season when the bitter rivals face each other on 17 January.

The Red Devils will make the short trip to Anfield in search of a first victory over Liverpool FC on Merseyside since January 2016.

However, despite their form and position, former Liverpool FC and Manchester United striker Owen played down the Red Devils’ chances of winning the Premier League crown this term.

Asked whether Manchester United could win the title without their talisman Fernandes after the win over Villa, Owen replied: “I’m not sure they can win the title with him to be honest.

“I still think they’re… I think they’re a brilliant counter-attacking team, against the bigger and better teams they are exceptional and can give anyone a problem.

“The question I have is when they’re in possession against teams like Wolves and trying to break them down.”

He added: “I watched them the other day and there were no chances. Listen, they’re right in the mix, no question about it.

“They’re second on goal difference, but are they as rounded a team as Liverpool or Man City?

“I still think they’re a step behind and I still think it will be a struggle for them to win the title. But the way they’re playing, anything is possible.”

Manchester United haven’t won the Premier League title since 2013 when Sir Alex Ferguson secured his 13th top-flight crown.

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