Raphael Varane said “everything is possible” for Manchester United this season after their derby victory over Manchester City.
Manager Erik ten Hag played down the prospect of a title challenge following the 2-1 win over Pep Guardiola’s side at Old Trafford on Saturday.
– Stream on ESPN+: Spanish Supercopa, Carabao Cup, more (US)
But nine points behind leaders Arsenal with a trip to the Emirates to come on Sunday, Varane has hinted that an unlikely title charge could be on.
“Everything is possible,” Varane said. “We’ll just take it game by game. It’s a long way to go and it’s very difficult. The intensity of every game is incredible, the physical effort.
“It’s like the same intensity of a big Champions [League] game every game. The rhythm is very high. The players are very well prepared physically. We know how difficult it is. But we’re solid, we’re strong. We just need to use the quality players with the ball.”
United’s jump up the league table has come on the back of their impressive home form, which has seen Ten Hag’s team win seven of their nine league games at Old Trafford and beat Liverpool, Arsenal and neighbors City.
“It’s a stadium with a magnificent atmosphere, it’s amazing,” Varane added.
– Weekend review: Man Utd no longer under the radar in title race
– Dawson: Rashford could become Man United’s Mbappe
“At the end [against City] I felt a connection with the fans. We really want to win and to do that against a big rival, in our home. We live stronger with this. It was beautiful.”
United can enhance their title credentials this week when they travel to Crystal Palace on Wednesday followed by the crucial clash against Arsenal at the Emirates.
Two victories would extend their winning run and also put pressure on Mikel Arteta’s side, who opened up an eight-point lead at the top on Sunday with a 2-0 win over Tottenham.
“We have to look forward,” United midfielder Bruno Fernandes said. “We have to look forward to the next game because you can be closer, but if you don’t keep winning, it will go.
“Straight away, it’s Crystal Palace. It’s always tough to play there, we all know that. So our focus has to be straight on that.”