Roberto Mancini has gone on record to say that Robin van Persie could be the difference in the title race this season.
Last time around, Manchester City managed to pip Manchester United to the title on the last day of the season, having fired themselves back into contention while United stuttered.
City then missed out on signing van Persie from Arsenal, and the Dutchman has gone on to win vital points for the Red Devils already this season, maintaining the red hot scoring streak he has enjoyed for the best part of two years.
Despite RVP’s major significance to United’s climb to the top of the Premier League table, manager Alex Ferguson does not agree with Mancini that the striker is United’s one critical player.
Fergie insists that there is far more to his Red Devils squad than just the prolific Dutch international hit-man.
"I don't go along with the idea we have become a one-man team," Ferguson told United Review, referring to RVP, who has scored 10 goals in his last 10 appearances, and 17 league goals in total.
"There was a time in our history when one man did carry us for a while. Eric Cantona kept us in contention with his goals when a few others were off the boil.
"But things are quite different now. Javier Hernandez has weighed in with 12 goals while Wayne Rooney is currently on nine.
"Two defenders, Johnny Evans and Patrice Evra have chipped in with eight between them so it doesn't stand up to see us as a one-man band overly dependent on van Persie, brilliant as he has been at both making and taking goals.
"He is absolutely relishing his new challenge. He is the right player, at the right club, at the right time.
"He has a winning mentality, but as he points out, it is one that goes right through the squad and one that will hopefully see us push on in both league and the cups and successfully navigate what is a busy and challenging period."