The Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has said that this season will be long and hard in terms of the title race. The Manchester United manager was speaking after the 1-0 win over West Ham that helped the team maintain their lead at the top of the table over the second-placed team and arch rivals Manchester City.

Robin van Persie scored the fastest goal so far in the season to help United on their course for a narrow victory over West Ham. This was the 12th goal of the season for the summer signing and it was an extremely deflected effort.

However, Ferguson did not complain about the result of the match as it helped them maintain the one-point advantage over Manchester City. They also increased their advantage over Chelsea to 7 points after the London team could only manage a 0-0 draw with neighbours Fulham. Still, Ferguson has said that he will not rule out Chelsea from the title race because it is still early in the season. Ferguson has also stressed the importance of winning matches 1-0 because it is all about three points in the end. United had a few scary moments, but they were extremely happy to come out the clean sheet in the match.

“The three points means we’re still ahead in the league and, with Chelsea drawing, it draws us away from them a little bit further. But City are on our tails. It’s going to be a long season. The importance of winning 1-0 in certain games is your opponents know the resilience is there. Our 1-0 that night won us the league. There are important 1-0 victories. We’ve had many of them,” said Ferguson after the match. Van Persie is now one short of the goals scored by Luis Suarez in the Premier league.