Manchester: Manchester United visit Ewood Park to face Blackburn on Saturday requiring just a point to win their 19th English title, with captain Nemanja Vidic believing the club's critics have propelled them to success this season.
Sir Alex Ferguson's squad has never been that easy on the eye this term but that has not stopped them from being the most successful side in the Premier League and, with 36 games played, they are six points clear at the summit.
Last weekend’s victory against Chelsea at Old Trafford means United simply need to avoid losing against either Rovers or Blackpool in their remaining two encounters to regain the title from the second-placed Londoners.
If they do, United will finally become the most successful English club in terms of domestic championships, breaking the record of 18 they currently share with arch-rivals Liverpool, although Liverpool still have five European Cups to United's three.
That could become four later this month when United face Barcelona in the Champions League final at Wembley.
But for now, Vidic is concentrating on picking up the valuable point required to enable him to lift his first trophy as United's captain.
"Compliments are not always good for you. Criticism can help a team," Vidic said. "Back in early season there were people who were always trying to compare this team to other United teams.
"They were saying that we didn't have the individuals like we used to and we were not as good."
"But you look at the names in this team and you think 'how could they say that?' I couldn't agree with all that was going on then."
"We have never been focused on what people have been saying about us but you can still get benefits from it. It can be a positive."
Central defender Vidic added: "Sometimes criticism can help a side. It can drag you forward. You have to work harder to prove to your critics that anything they are saying is not true. That it is different to their opinions."
"If we win the title we will have proved to everyone that we are a very good team. We are nearly there now to prove them wrong. This team has space to grow. I think that next season we will be even better."
United could never have dreamt of such an easy-looking end to the season with fixtures against Rovers and fellow relegation candidates Blackpool.
Steve Kean has failed to inspire Rovers since he replaced Sam Allardyce as manager in December and is a divisive figure among the club's fans.
However, victory over United would secure Rovers' Premier League future and strengthen Kean's managerial position.
Those two factors mean United will face a side unwilling to allow them to cruise to the title.
"I think looking at Man United's point of view they have an agenda but we have our own agenda at this point of the season," Kean said.
"They will be determined like we will be. We are confident we will get something from the game. It will be tight."
"We won't be approaching this game to defend. It's a fantastic time to play them with them having one eye on the championship."
"You always relish coming up against Sir Alex. Just look at his record. I now have the opportunity to select a team to come up against one of his."
Rovers are likely to be without David Dunn (calf), Ryan Nelsen (knee) and Vince Grella (Achilles) while United are likely to have a virtually full strength line-up to choose from.