Edinson Cavani believes Manchester United have a target on their back in every game they play.
United take on Fulham in the Premier League tonight (Wednesday, 8.15pm kick off UK time), looking to reclaim top spot in the division with a victory.
A draw against Liverpool on Sunday, coupled with Leicester's 2-0 win over Chelsea, has sent United back down to second in the Premier League. And it prompted a warning from Cavani that — irrespective of their league position — United must prepare for opponents to be extra inspired against them.
He told United Review: “I believe that one of the most important things that we need to be aware of, whenever we go into any game, is that we are Manchester United, and, irrespective of whether we are top of the league or in any other position, every other team that plays against Manchester United try to do their absolute best to try and beat them.
“It was also a similar situation for me when I was at PSG. Teams try to do the impossible to get a victory against one of the most legendary and best teams in the world. So ensuring we are focused and concentrated on this, should give us the energy to want to fight for this badge.
“And, right now, that we are top of the league, to also want to fight to stay right where we are. For all that, we need to be ready and mentally prepared to compete.
"Like I always say, the important thing isn’t just winning a couple of games, it’s having that consistency of always competing; competing in every game and for every ball, and concentrating to the absolute maximum for every situation that comes up in the game. And that’s what in the end, allows you to achieve your ultimate goal.“
Manchester United squandered late chances at Anfield to draw 0-0 with Liverpool.
Paul Pogba and Bruno Fernandes saw gilt-edged opportunities saved by Liverpool keeper Alisson, as United improved through the game and ended up "disappointed" with a point, according to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. Now United turn their attention to the visit to Fulham on Wednesday night.
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Cavani could come back into the United starting line up at Cravan Cottage, after coming on as a second half substitute against Liverpool.
The Uruguayan is well aware of the dangers posed by Scott Parker's rejuvenated Fulham side.
He added: "As I was saying before, Fulham will know very well that they have Manchester United coming up next, and they’ll be going all out to try and beat us, like they have done in the past and just like what we’ve seen with other teams like Burnley, who always give their utmost.
“So we need to be aware that it’s going to be a tough game and that we have to be 100 per cent focused, in order to take care of all the details so we can try to win the game in order to remain in the league position that we currently occupy.”