Manchester United legend Denis Irwin has pinpointed injuries to several key players throughout the course of the campaign as the main reason for their struggle in all competitions this term. The former defender also suggested that the Red Devils do not have the "divine right" to win silverware every season and has urged the Old Trafford club to start afresh next term.
Earlier in March, Louis van Gaal was without the services of 14 first team players and the list included the likes of Luke Shaw, who has long been on the sidelines since last September, Wayne Rooney and Bastian Schweinsteiger. However, the German midfielder has returned from injury against the Merseyside club.
The 20-time English champions have lost their last two fixtures. The first one was against West Bromwich Albion in the Premier League, which was then followed by a 2-0 defeat to Liverpool in the first leg of the Europa League clash at Anfield. The loss to West Brom saw them drop to the sixth place in the table.
Irwin has urged United to focus on finishing in the top four in the ongoing campaign and suggested that his former club forget about winning the title.
"Manchester United have no divine right to be winning trophies every season and the last three seasons, they haven't performed. Simple as that. We have to get back there and be able to compete," Irwin told IBTimes UK.
"We had a lot of injuries this season. I think you got to hold your hands up with that, which has stopped us. We were on top of the table at one point, but we had a very bad December and an OK January and February."
"We have to forget about the title. Our aim is to finish the season in the top four. But we have to keep going right till the end and the next season, we have to start afresh. So all we can do is keep going."