Nobody has yet dared to mention a treble to match that of 1999, but Manchester United are beginning to have Double vision again as they prepare to meet Reading at Old Trafford tomorrow knowing victory will put them in the last eight of the FA Cup, while holding a 12-point lead in the Premier League.
A favourable sixth-round draw for the winners would provide every incentive to progress towards the fourth League and Cup Double of Sir Alex Ferguson's 27 years at the club. Key to those ambitions will be continuing to pick the right team. Manchester City's failure at Southampton last Saturday saw Ferguson play a stronger side at home to Everton the next day, when victory established that formidable lead.
Nemanja Vidic played no part in the drawn Champions' League tie at Real Madrid on Wednesday, but Jonny Evans did well partnering Rio Ferdinand. "We keep Rio fresh for the games we think are right, him and Vida," Ferguson said. As for the rest of the squad, "You have to keep them all contributing and keep them involved, it isn't easy because there were a lot of disappointed players on Wednesday."