Rooney admits City incentive
Man Utd ace says beating rivals adds extra spice to title chase
By Graeme Bailey - Tweet me: @skygraemebailey. Last Updated: April 2, 2012 2:52pm
Wayne Rooney: Relishing trying to beat City to title
Wayne Rooney admits that winning the title this season will mean a bit more because they will have beaten rivals Manchester City to the prize.
Manchester United are in pole position to take their 20th league crown, as they have the chance to move five points clear at the top of the table on Monday evening with victory at Blackburn.
City have been top for the majority of the campaign, but they have stuttered in recent weeks and reigning champions United have taken their chance.
And Rooney admits beating them to the title would add something to the success.
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"Would it mean something extra because City are challenging? Yes, of course," he said.
"It's the first time since I've been here and the first time for many years that United and City have been going head-to-head for the title.
"To win it would be great for the players, the fans and the club as a whole, and it would definitely be one of the best titles we've ever won, if we can do it."
Many have claimed that United have been far from their best this season, but Rooney insists that winning the title this year has been as difficult as ever.
"It's probably more challenging than it has ever been in the Premier League to win the title," he continued.
"You have to be at your best in every game. You can't perform at 75 per cent of your capabilities and expect to win it.
"The league in general has got stronger over the last few years.
"You used to have the usual top four teams and then everyone else playing for the other positions.
"Now there is six or seven teams vying for a top-four place.
"We have played some great football at times and other times when we haven't played so well, but we've shown spirit and determination to grind out results.
"If you look at our points tally for this stage of the season, it's probably one of the highest in United's Premier League history, so we haven't done too badly.
"We're not really too concerned what people say as long as we keep winning games.
"The most important thing is for us to concentrate on ourselves and make sure we take care of our results, but of course it does give you a real boost when you see your rivals drop points.
"We just need to keep winning to ensure we take advantage of that, if and when it happens."