ANDRE Villas-Boas admits he is still haunted by the memory of Chelsea's defeat at Manchester United earlier in the season – and by the lack of critical acclaim from the pundits.

Chelsea's 3-1 defeat at Old Trafford in September drew accusations that his team were too gung-ho and left themselves too vulnerable at the back, even though their adventurous play was eye-catching.

The Blues boss was clearly stung by the views of media analysts at the time, particularly Alan Hansen on BBC's Match of the Day.

“I carry the last game with me a little bit. I try to forget it, but I can't, “ Villas-Boas said.

“We played excellent football, completely open, extremely positive. In the end, it didn't matter a lot to opinion-generating, but left us with a great sense of pride.

“I think from then on, we sorted what was maybe our defensive problems or weaknesses and we are nearer to the numbers of the best defences in the country.

“Maybe we lost a little bit of that edge in terms of attacking since then - perhaps not in terms of creativity, because we still create a lot of attacking opportunities, but we haven't found that efficiency that could explode us into better goalscoring results.”

The Chelsea boss admits his team will be playing as much for their Champions League aspirations as anything else against United, rather than to revive any title aspirations.

“Our objectives now have turned into week by week situations,” he said.

“At the moment, the most important thing is to try to win this game and to bring the second placed team closer to us.

“Success would be to win the Premier League, but it doesn't seem viable at the moment, so minimal damage is Champions League competition.”

Villas-Boas added: “We are unbeaten in six, but it's a bitter-sweet feeling because there were a couple of draws that we wanted to avoid – at Norwich and Swansea – where we thought we could have done a little bit better. “

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