Club captain Wayne Rooney has insisted Manchester United are in a "good position" to make top four this season, and thus qualify for the UEFA Champions League, despite still lying in sixth behind their five main rivals.
The Reds' form has improved in the last two months, though their poor results of September and October are still affecting them in February, José Mourinho's side still relying on others to slip up.
Rooney hails Mourinho
United have had the chance on a number of occasions to move into or closer to the top four as teams did indeed slip up, and missed them.
A 3-0 win against Leicester City changed that trend and United will move into fifth, one position higher, if they beat Watford at home on Saturday.
"I think it's going okay," Rooney told GQ Magazine. "We're in a good position in terms of making the top four."
Rooney insisted that United's "ambition was to try and be champions" but admitted that the players "know that" that "will be difficult now."
Rooney optimistic about top four chances
However, he said that "we're right there in terms of trying to place ourselves in the top four. We're still in the Europa League, in the final of the League Cup and still in the FA Cup, so they're trophies we believe we've got a strong enough squad to go and win. Then obviously now probably we have to look at trying to finish in the top four."
Rooney recently surpassed club legend Sir Bobby Charlton to become United's all-time top goalscorer with 250 goals, an astounding achievement.
Despite that, the last few months have also seen links with the Chinese Super League emerge.
His boss Mourinho hasn't ruled out Rooney moving to China for a final paycheck before his retirement and some criticised that. Rooney described his boss as "a top manager."
"I think his record at all the clubs he's been at shows that," Rooney said. Mourinho "knows what he wants from the players," and vice versa, "he's strong in that sense but as long as you're doing what he wants, them I'm sure you'll be fine."
The Portuguese has a "winning mentality", a Premier League winner with Chelsea on three occasions, and he "certainly reminded [United] of that" mentality.