Sir Alex On Stoke Win

Last updated : 06 January 2011 By Utd Mad Ed

And it was a hard earned point over the Potteries outfit with Dean Whitehead pulling the visitors level before a great strike by Nani proved to be enough to seal the points.

Despite being top and unbeaten in the league this season, many believe United still haven’t hit top form, but Ferguson said: "We are an easy target for that kind of thing. But we just have to dismiss it and concentrate on our ambitions and that is to win the league.

"Of course the form of Chico gives me a problem when Wayne is fit. But that is the kind of problem you want. Over the years, the strikers I have had have always given me that problem.

"That is Chico's job. And as long as he keeps putting the ball in the net, he is giving me those problems. You have to have faith and trust in the players.

"They have earned that trust. I see them every day in training and in the games they have played in. They have never let me down.

"And Chris Smalling was excellent. At 20 years of age he is doing very well. I am pleased with his improvement. He is certainly the future of the club."