|Carlos Tevez is likely to return
against Bolton [GALLO/GETTY]
Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson called on his strikers to take their chances when the Premier League leaders host struggling Bolton Wanderers on Wednesday.
Ferguson, whose team needed a 76th-minute goal to beat bottom club Derby County 1-0 at the weekend, is hoping United can go three points clear before Sunday’s crunch game against Liverpool.
“When you see what happened at Derby on Saturday, not taking our chances, you realise you can’t take anything for granted,” he said.
“Sure, there are big weekends ahead, but the other matches are just as important.
“If we perform well and take our chances then we’ll win the match. But it’s important we respect our opponents.
“It’s encouraging we’re making so many chances (but) perhaps the forwards just need to relax a little in front of goal. Then the goals will come.”
Bolton, who have lost their last four league games, beat United 1-0 in November.
Anxious to avoid a repeat, Ferguson knows good football alone will not be enough to open up a gap on second-placed Arsenal.
“There are big games coming up and (Liverpool) is one of them, especially when you consider Chelsea are playing Arsenal on the same day,” said Ferguson.
“Some of our football recently has been terrific and there’s good penetration in the team.”
United have a game in hand and are level on 67 points with Arsenal, who trail on goal difference.
Third-placed Chelsea (64) also have a game in hand and travel to Tottenham Hotspur on Wednesday.
Argentina striker Carlos Tevez is expected to return to United’s squad after being rested at the weekend.
Goalkeeper Ben Foster, who had been due to go out on loan, may retain his place after a good debut at Derby despite the return from suspension of Tomasz Kuszczak.
Defender Mikael Silvestre is set to make his comeback from a knee injury, which has kept him out since September, in the reserve game against Manchester City on Thursday.
“Mikael’s training with the first-team now and he’s coming along well. It’s mainly been no-contact stuff but he should play in the next reserve game, along with Gary Neville,” Ferguson said.