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Neville: United could miss out on top four if they keep 'sleepwalking' in games

Meanwhile, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp insists he is under no additional pressure from the club’s owners to qualify for the Champions League.

Gary Neville (file pic).
Gary Neville (file pic).
Image: PA

FORMER MANCHESTER UNITED defender Gary Neville believes the Red Devils are “sleepwalking” into a top-four race after their “boring” draw at Crystal Palace.

A day after rivals Manchester City made it 21 wins in a row to open up a 15-point gap at the top, the Red Devils were left frustrated in a goalless draw with the Eagles and have won only one of their last five matches in the division.

Liverpool host Chelsea on Thursday night and the two clubs will want to close the gap on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s struggling side.

Neville said on Sky Sports: “They (United) looked lethargic and well off it, their body language looked really drained.

“I thought they would cement second place by picking up points at places like Crystal Palace. Now Liverpool and Chelsea will think they are in with a right chance.

“It wasn’t a good night for United. It doesn’t matter who’s in charge, you can’t be boring and that was boring tonight.

“They are sleepwalking in games. They are going to end up in a top-four race if they are not careful.”

Meanwhile, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp insists he is under no additional pressure from the club’s owners to qualify for the Champions League.

The defending champions have slipped from top spot to sixth due to a dreadful run since Christmas but a much-needed victory at Sheffield United got them back on track.

A win over Chelsea, just a point and a place above them, at Anfield on Thursday night would lift them back into the top four but Klopp said there was no more pressure than usual from Fenway Sports Group to secure their place among Europe’s elite again.

“So the main reason for qualifying for the Champions League is financial reasons but it is a great competition to play in and you want to excite some players to join,” said Klopp.

“In the beginning it was like this when I had players sitting there who had offers from clubs who played in the Champions League and it was like, ‘Sorry, we can only offer nothing or the Europa League’.

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“But it is always about finances, this year is no different but that it’s important cannot change a thing.

“It is not that the owners called me and said, ‘If you don’t qualify for the Champions League this or that will happen’ because we are all together in this situation and we all understand it.

“They know we try absolutely everything to qualify this year. I hope people will still see we do our absolute best to make it happen.”

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