United are currently fifth in the Premier League, with no guarantee of a top-four finish, and Ferguson acknowledged the growing significance of the Europa League for Jose Mourinho’s side.
“It’s very important now, because if you win it, you’re in the Champions League,” said former United boss Ferguson.
“And at the moment, in the Premier League, it’s a real fight for the positions behind Chelsea.
“You’ve got Tottenham, Arsenal, Liverpool, ourselves, so it’s not going to be easy to get into the top four. They could do it, but I look at the Europa League as a great chance.
“First of all, we’ve never won the Europa League, that’s one thing. We’ve not been in it many times, maybe once or twice, but nonetheless it adds to the CV, so I think we’ve a good opportunity.
“Winning a trophy at United is the most important thing. That’s what the club’s history is all about, and I looked upon the League Cup as important trophy and was fortunate to win it four times.
“No matter what trophy you’re going for, if you get to a final, you’ve got to win it, it’s as simple as that.”
On his relationship with Mourinho, Ferguson, speaking to SiriusXM in the US, said: “I get on well with Jose and I think he’s doing a really good job.
“He’s been a bit unlucky, actually, because in their home games this season they’ve been absolutely brilliant in most of them and [ended up] drawing them.
“If he’d got those wins, which he deserved, they would be challenging for the league, there’s no doubt about that.
“But their season’s still alive, they’ve won the League Cup, they’re in the Europa League and I think they’ve a great chance there.”