'It's for Chelsea to throw away now'

Manchester United captain Roy Keane has conceded that only a Chelsea collapse can prevent the London club collecting a first top-flight title in 50 years.

The Republic of Ireland midfielder turned in a vintage display during United’s 1-0 win away to Liverpool on Saturday, a result that kept the Red Devils third and just a point behind second-placed champions Arsenal.

However, Chelsea’s 2-0 win against Tottenham later on Saturday left Chelsea 10 points clear of Arsenal and 11 ahead of United.

Keane has insisted his club will not give up but he told United’s own television station, MUTV, on Monday that it is Chelsea’s to lose.

“It is for Chelsea to throw away now,” said Keane. “On an off day, they might drop a few points but other teams will have to win three or four games just to catch them up.

“There is no doubt about it, Chelsea are in a great position. They are playing well and deserve great credit but it would be nice to put them under pressure.”

United have been behind since the first day of the season after a defeat at Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge ground was followed by draws against Blackburn, Everton and Bolton.

Keane’s team won’t have a chance to gain revenge against Chelsea until April 16, when Jose Mourinho’s expensively assembled side travel to Old Trafford.

And by then the Londoners may well have made sure of the Premier League title, although Keane hoped that Chelsea’s relative inexperience could prove their undoing.

“Lots of those players have not been in this position before.
That is why it is important to put them under pressure,” he said.

“It is no good the gap still being 10 points going into the last month or two. We must reduce the gap before they come to Old Trafford so we can see what their temperament is like,” added the former Nottingham Forest star.

“They have answered all the questions so far, but we will see what happens from now.”—Sapa-AFP

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