Manchester United return to Sunderland tomorrow with Sir Alex Ferguson feeling his players have delivered the best possible response to last season's final-day title disappointment at the Stadium of Light.
As the final whistle blew on their campaign at the ground last season, United were technically champions. Seconds later, Manchester City's Sergio Aguero scored the goal against Queen's Park Rangers that changed the course of Premier League history. Such was the nature of that shattering experience, some wondered whether United's players would recover. But with Ferguson in charge, it probably should never have been questioned.
"These things are hard to take," said Ferguson. "For about 20 seconds we thought we had won it and it was snatched away.
"But what we have done well this season is dusted ourselves down and made a real good challenge of the league. The concentration levels, the commitment of the players and the team spirit have been fantastic. In that respect we have answered the only way we can."