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Giggs asserts fourth place possible in 'freak' season

"It hurts that we are not in it, of course," he said. "We had a year out of the Champions League and we missed it. We do miss it (now).

Giggs asserts fourth place possible in 'freak' season

Ryan Giggs is optimistic about Manchester United's chances of beating derby rivals Manchester City to the final Champions League spot by ending the Premier League season in fourth place.

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United, who are sixth in the table, travel to the Etihad Stadium on Sunday looking to close the gap on their neighbours, who are four points and two places ahead of them.

"It's not a big gap," Giggs told the Times. "Especially when you look at the league this season, teams are going to drop points.

"It's been a freak season. It's a very tough league where nothing is guaranteed and crazy things have happened.

"We have a lot of players back so if you win games the momentum starts and the confidence builds."

Both Manchester teams are some way behind league leaders Leicester City, who sit five points clear of a chasing pack led by Tottenham Hotspur.

The former midfielder and current assistant to manager Louis van Gaal wants United back among the European elite next season, after watching them get pushed into the Europa League this term after they finished third in the group stage.

"You watch it on TV and you wish you were involved. It's the elite competition."

United host Liverpool in the second leg of their Europa League Round of 16 tie on Thursday, having lost the first leg at Anfield 2-0.

"We are still in the Europa League, the FA Cup and trying to get into the top four. Those are the main objectives," Giggs said.

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