The Premier League is arguably the toughest league in the world and this season promises to be one of the most open title races of all time.

Reigning champions Manchester City haven't enjoyed the greatest of starts and already people are daring to rule them out of the race. Anyone who remembers their wretched form at the beginning of the last campaign - picking up just three wins from their opening eight league games - will know that's a silly mistake to make.

Both Liverpool and Chelsea were tipped to be fighting it out for last season's Premier League title after enjoying steady starts to the season, yet come May the pair were scrapping it out to even earn a place in the Champions League.

And then there was Manchester United.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men looked more like relegation candidates in the early weeks of the season, losing three of their opening six league games, a run which included a 6-1 hammering at home to Tottenham. And guess who went on to finish above both Chelsea and Liverpool? You probably see where we're going with this - it's way too early to be making predictions.

That being said, we're not going to sit here and moan that United have had a good start to the season, with Solskjaer's men picking up an impressive 13 points from a possible 15.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Manager of Manchester United reacts during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Manchester United at London Stadium on September 19, 2021 in London, England.
Solskjaer will want to challenge for the title this season

Former United defender Rio Ferdinand believes Solskjaer's side have a chance of winning the title, but he concedes their inability to drag themselves over the line against so-called 'lesser' teams could hamper them.

After the 1-1 draw against Southampton last month, he said: "These are the games last season that stopped us from doing better than we were. These are the games that we said 'if they can win them and continue how they were doing against the top six, they've got a chance to win the league'.

"I hope this isn't a sign of things to come and this is the Achilles heel that was there last year."

It's true that United did drop unnecessary points last season. In the end, Solskjaer's team finished on 74 points, but that tally could have - and probably should have - been a lot higher. The 2-1 loss at home to Sheffield United was perhaps the one game that showed the club were some way off matching their Manchester rivals.

Yes, the draw with the Saints was frustrating, but this season could be a totally different story. The signings of Jadon Sancho, Raphael Varane and Cristiano Ronaldo have given the club momentum. United supporters now genuinely believe their club can win the league.

United's poor start last season meant they were never really in touch with the title-chasing pack, but this season they're level on points with Chelsea and Liverpool, and three points ahead of City - basically, after telling you a team's start to the season didn't matter, now we're telling you it definitely does.

United's fixture list could also be an advantage to them this season.

Solskjaer's side's next two league outings see them host Aston Villa and Everton, both tough games but probably ones they should take maximum points from.

Meanwhile, Chelsea face City at Stamford Bridge before Pep Guardiola's side travel to Anfield the following weekend. Some of United's nearest challengers are going to drop points and it's imperative that they capitalise on that.

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Everyone knows the league won't be decided in the next few weeks, but United have a great opportunity to take the lead in the Premier League title race. They know they have to win these games.

Chelsea beat Villa 3-0 recently, while United beat Everton 4-0 in a pre-season friendly. The next two matches are definitely winnable.

The fans know what a great opportunity this is for the team, now it's down to the players and the coaching staff to deliver the goods.

How important do you think these games are for United? Follow our new United Fan Brands writer Omar Garrick on Twitter to get involved in the discussion and give us your thoughts on the matter in the comments section below.