Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Manchester United need to strengthen

On the back of the agonising penalty shoot-out defeat to Villarreal, Ole reiterated his desire to have two or three new signings in the summer.

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in a file photo; Credit: Manchester United Twitter

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has said that Manchester United need to strengthen the starting XI over the summer. He feels that’s the best way to keep up pace with the club’s rivals. On the back of the agonising penalty shoot-out defeat to Villarreal in the Europa League final, Ole reiterated his desire to have two or three new signings in the summer. “I’ve been delighted with the effort, desire, determination of all the players,” Ole said in Gdansk.

“I can’t fault them at all and we’ve probably done as well as anyone could have imagined. So yeah, those of us who are here now need to do better, we need to work better, work harder, cleverer. But as I’ve said, two or three players to strengthen the starting XI and the squad altogether. It’s important for us to go even further because I’m sure our challengers will also want to improve so we will want to improve as much as we can.”

Ole gave a detailed insight into the team and his thoughts behind the substitutions on the night. He was particularly happy about Scott McTominay. “We felt the players out there, you have got Mason [Greenwood], Marcus [Rashford, who are] match winners in their own right,” he added. “Bruno [Fernandes], Edi [Cavani], of course, they can create anything. Scott McTominay was absolutely outstanding out there. For me, he was the best player on the pitch.

“So it is difficult to make that change, especially when Fred has been injured for a week, and he came on and he did well, the boy. But we just couldn’t create enough chances to win the game. When they have [Pau] Torres and [Raul] Albiol in there to make crosses it is always going to be difficult. We needed to play our way into the box quicker.”

Accepting that anything can happen in a penalty shoot-out, Ole opened up on the reason behind sticking with David De Gea for the shoot-out instead of bringing on Dean Henderson in his place. “You go through every scenario, of course and it has crossed my mind in the build-up to the game but we were confident in David. We prepared but, in a penalty shoot-out, anything can happen in those, so I stuck with the keeper who played all the game.

“I have got to say that the penalty shoot-out was high quality but we didn’t do enough in 120 minutes to score more goals. And that is the disappointing bit; that we built pressure, that we had moments when we felt that if we could just kick on a little bit now, then you can get the goal, but we just couldn’t.”




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