Nemanja Vidic admits the Wayne Rooney saga is not helping Manchester United, but insists they must put it to one side.
The Red Devils have been rocked by the revelation that their talismanic frontman is looking for a switch elsewhere.
He claims the ambitions of the club heading forward do not live up to his own and believes he needs to move on in order to satisfy his craving for silverware.
The issue is set to drag on until at least January, when the transfer window re-opens, but could linger around Old Trafford until next summer if a deal is not reached in the New Year.
United could do without such a distraction at present as they have made a less than inspiring start in their Premier League title bid and have looked rusty at times in Europe.
They did, however, claim a 1-0 victory over Bursaspor in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday and look good bets to reach the knockout stages.
Vidic, though, is aware that any future success could rest on their ability to get their house back in order and resolve the Rooney issue one way or another.
"There has been so much talk about Wayne Rooney and there is not much focus on the game and on the football," the Serbian centre-half told Sky Sports after skippering United to victory in midweek.
"We tried to keep our concentration high, keep winning and make it easier for us."
Vidic acknowledges that Rooney is not the first player to become embroiled in a contract dispute, leading to intense transfer speculation.
He is, however, keen to point out that the matter cannot be allowed to cast a cloud over life at Old Trafford, with the players doing their utmost to avoid discussing the England international's future on the training ground.
"This time it is an exception with Wayne, but it's happened before with players negotiating with clubs about their contract and a lot of talk in the papers," he added.
"We are just trying to train and not speak too much with each other because we don't want to take the focus from the games on the pitch. This is the case with Wayne as well."