MANCHESTER UNITED said won last night as they went five points clear at the top of the Premier League. Two thunderbolts in the last 10 minutes from Antonio Valencia and sub Ashley Young finally broke brave Blackburn’s resistance.
Valencia admitted it was ’50-50′ whether his ferocious 81st-minute right-foot strike was a shot or cross.
But boss Alex Ferguson did not care. It answered his prayers for victory and means even more of a squeaky bum time for Manchester City rival Roberto Mancini.
Delighted Fergie said: “The goals came so late, which typifies the club’s history.
“Coming when it did, the Valencia goal was very important.
“If you don’t try to shoot you’ll never find out if you can score. It had great power.”
Mancini’s men could be eight points in arrears by the time they face Arsenal on Sunday afternoon if United see off QPR earlier in the day.
Ferguson added: “It is vital that we win that game. We are also helped by having made up the goals deficit on City. I think it was 18 at one time.”
Young, who scored from 20 yards with five minutes to go, said: “To get that first goal, whether it was a shot or a cross, delighted us and I’d put my goal up there with my best.”
Steve Kean’s Rovers fought a battling rearguard action but finally bowed to the pressure they were put under and fall into the bottom three on goal difference.
Kean said: “I’m frustrated and disappointed. It was a game that could have gone either way.
“Their keeper had a great night but you have to take your chances.
“If we can play like that for 90 minutes in our remaining games, we will beat any of the teams we still have to face.”
Even Fergie admitted United owed a debt to keeper David de Gea for some of his saves on rare Blackburn breaks.
He said: “De Gea’s progress is clear. He has always had great ability and kept us in the game here so we could go on and get those goals.”