Last season, Manchester United let an eight point lead at the top of the Premier League table slip through their fingers and saw hated rivals Manchester City clinch the title on goal difference with the final kick of the season.

This season, Sir Alex Ferguson and his men have had a determination about them not to allow a similarly crushing disappointment happen to them again, and they have romped into a 12-point lead at the summit, an imperious position to be in considering there are only eleven games left to play.

United are also a team who traditionally kick into a higher gear in the second half of the season, so the teams sitting below them at present have every right to be concerned.

Is the title race all over? Bookmakers Betfred and Paddy Power seem to think so. They have begun paying out early on Manchester United winning the title despite the fact there are a whole three months left to go, while 79% of those who completed our poll last week seem to think the FA may as well send someone over to the Etihad to collect the trophy, have it polished off and delivered by hand to Sir Alex and his men.

But why are United in such a commanding position at the moment? Is it luck, skill, or a little in between?

Click “Next” to find out.

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This article was first posted on February 21, 2013