MANCHESTER (Agencies) Post-Cristiano Ronaldo Manchester United are still on top of the Premier League, with maximum points from two games in Europe, as they fly to Russia for Wednesdays Champions League tie with CSKA Moscow. However, this season, particularly at Old Trafford, United seemed to lack conviction. They have been pushed to the limit by Arsenal, Manchester City, Sunderland and now Bolton, and on three of those occasions United needed an own goal to win or salvage a point. The scene of Ryan Giggs shielding the ball near the corner flag in stoppage time to run the clock down did not seem the United way, showing just how stressful this victory was. Fergie, fresh from a two-week period of self-recrimination following his attack on ref Alan Wiley, was honest to acknowledge that the players made it harder than it should have been, Boltons spirited display almost saw them snatch a point at Old Trafford, like Sunderland had a fortnight earlier, and Bolton defender Zat Knight, who was the hapless victim of a fifth-minute own goal, claimed United no longer struck fear into the Premier Leagues so-called smaller clubs. He beleieves its not just about the big four now. Without the injured Wayne Rooney and their former star player Ronaldo, United had no-one to take the game by the scruff of the neck and win it by sheer force of will. Michael Owens poorly-directed header that struck Knight and trundled over the line with the game five minutes old took United ahead. Impressive play between Gary Neville and Antonio Valencia saw the latter score his first United goal in the 32nd minute, after which, Fergie admitted, his players fell into a comfort zone, from which they were jolted with 15 minutes left when Matt Taylor out-jumped Patrice Evra to score with a header. Hence United hung on to maitain their place at the top of the table. However, this is an ominous sign for rival teams to gear up considering Man U have not really given their best. Thoush Fergie knows his players must raise their performance level if they are to remain on course for an historic fourth Premier League crown and record-breaking 19th title. Man Utd: Van der Sar 6; Neville 7, Ferdinand 6, Evans 7, Evra 5 (OShea 83); Valencia 7, Carrick 6, Anderson 6 (Scholes 86), Giggs 7; Berbatov 7, Owen 6 (Welbeck 84) Bolton: Jaaskelainen 7; Ricketts 6, Cahill 6, Knight 6, Samuel 6; Lee 5 (Klasnic 50, 6), Gardner 6, Muamba 7 (Basham 76, 6), Cohen 5 (M Davies 64, 6), Taylor 7; K Davies 7