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Park`s 3rd Goal of Season Boosts United`s Title Hopes

Posted May. 04, 2009 07:56,   


Park Ji-sung`s third goal of the season and first in 55 days has helped Manchester United closer to its third straight English Premier League title.

“Manchester United has nailed an important victory to retain the (English) Premier League title,” United coach Sir Alex Ferguson said after his team`s 2-0 victory over Middlesbrough Saturday.

He also said his team has taken a big step toward winning the Premiership title after the win.

Usually cautious when speaking of his team’s prospects of winning the league, Ferguson apparently is now convinced of United`s three-peat bid.

With their seasons winding down, the winners of Europe’s three major soccer leagues are likely United in England, FC Barcelona in Spain, and Inter Milan in Italy. Many say the three teams have climbed the toughest part of the mountain before reaching the top.

Barring an unexpected turn of events, United will likely claim its 18th league title. The win over Middlesbrough, a surprisingly resilient team, might have marked the climax for United.

Many United players had been under stress from a tight match schedule with key players suffering injury, something which weighed down on the team ahead of the Middlesbrough match. Nevertheless, goals from Ryan Giggs and Park gave the team the win and comfortable six-point lead over second-place Liverpool and Chelsea.

United will prevail if it posts two wins and one draw in its remaining four matches.

In Spain, FC Barcelona is on course for the Primera Liga crown after a convincing 6-2 win against archrival Real Madrid yesterday. Lionel Messi and Thierry Henry each scored twice in the El Classico Derby.

Real could have come to within one point of the league lead, but is now seven points behind Barcelona, which has won eight and drawn once in its last nine games.

In Italy, Inter Milan is on the verge of winning its fourth straight Serie A title with just four games remaining. Rival AC Milan is 10 points behind.