Sir Alex Ferguson was left ruing Manchester United’s failure to close the gap on Chelsea, Everton and Arsenal after his side’s 1-1 draw with Fulham.

Chelsea and the Gunners were involved in a 2-2 stalemate on Sunday, giving United the chance to reduce the deificit between themselves and their rivals.

But Ferguson said: “I think what makes it so bad is that both our rivals dropped points at the weekend.

“It was a great opportunity – and we haven’t delivered.”

He said: “It was a good performance – some of the football was fantastic – but we just didn’t finish them off.

“In fairness, it’s a fantastic strike from the Fulham player.”

The result leaves Ferguson’s side fourth in the league on 31 points – four points behind Arsenal, five behind second-placed Everton and nine behind leaders Chelsea.