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Ferguson: United must step up

Sir Alex Ferguson has told his Manchester United side to step up their performance levels or forget about winning the treble this season.

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Ferguson has kept United on course to repeat their famous feat of 1999 by maintaining their run in the Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup so far but, with Marseille the latest to test the Red Devils' title resolve, the manager believes that his players need to up their game.

"The team needs to step up a level,'' he told the Daily Mirror. ''It's an important time, being involved in three tournaments. The key is to have everyone available. It would be nice to get that.

"It doesn't matter how many players you have had injured in the past, the important thing is to have them all available for the run-in. If we have that, then it will increase our chances of success."

Marseille travel to Old Trafford on Tuesday for the second leg of their Champions League tie, currently poised at 0-0, and Ferguson's focus is fully trained on his side's performance.

"They need to perform if they want to win the Premier League and stay on course for the Treble," the Scott added. "We're experienced enough to do what we're doing at the moment, which is taking each game as it comes. The focus is on Marseille at the moment. They're a good team.

"With these European games at Old Trafford on a midweek night, there's a terrific atmosphere and that does help us. ¬Hopefully it's that way again and we get the result we want."

Having lost three out of five Premier League games, including mentally destructive defeats to Chelsea and Liverpool, Ferguson thinks the side are now back on the road to recovery after overcoming Arsenal in the FA Cup.

"The question when you lose a game is always how you recover," he said. "I think Saturday's performance was our recovery. Marseille is a different type of match but we are going to have to get to a good level to win."

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