Walk in easily? Think again! Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Manchester United’s Champions League chase is full of pit falls with the next five games … with his side getting only TWO points from the same opponent earlier in the season!
- Man United is looking for a Champions League place for next season
- Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s squad is unbeaten in 15 and has a good run-in
- But Solskjaer has insisted that the remaining matches will be far from easy
- He pointed out that United were struggling against the same opponents this season
- United will play Bournemouth on Saturday as they try to make it to the top four
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has guarded himself from complacency and insisted that Manchester United doesn’t have an ‘easy’ run up as they chase the Premier League top four.
United, which currently play an unbeaten run of 15 games in all competitions, will be entertaining second-class Bournemouth in Old Trafford on Saturday.
They still have games against other relegation-threatened teams Aston Villa and West Ham, as well as Southampton and Crystal Palace, during what appears to be a favorable lead-up to their Champions League hopes.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has guarded himself from complacency and insisted that the run-up to the Premier League in Manchester United is far from ‘easy’ as they chase a Champions League place
United were excellent when they knocked Brighton 3-0 aside on the Amex on Tuesday-evening
But Solskjaer refuses to be complacent to Eddie Howe’s side or the rest of United’s opponents, citing his team’s past struggles against them.
He said: ‘I’ve seen a lot of quotes, we have an easy walk-in, but the next five games: Bournemouth we lost there this season, Aston Villa we drew in Old Trafford, Southampton we drew, we lost to Palace, we lost to West Ham .
“There are teams we have to prove a point against and we need to improve the final performance.
“It’s not an easy game, no matter what anyone thinks doesn’t matter, we’ll have to perform. Bournemouth is fighting relegation, it’s not a nice place to be.
Marcus Rashford responds to a missed opportunity during United’s loss to Bournemouth in November
Former United striker Joshua King scored the only goal of the match at Vitality Stadium
“They are one of the best teams in the league on set-pieces, we know we have a lot of things to stop with them. But if we do our best, we have to create opportunities and win the match. ‘
Solskjaer also urged United to bridge the gap between champions Liverpool and Manchester City and adhere to its management principles to narrow them down to title challenges.
United are 34 points behind champion Liverpool, which lost 4-0 on Thursday-evening at the second-placed City. Solskjaer watched the game and believes his team will get closer next season.
“I have seen two very good teams,” said the United manager. “We believe that we are on the right track and that we can further improve and close the gap.
Mason Greenwood reacts after United’s 2-2 draw with Aston Villa at Old Trafford in December
United transfer target Jack Grealish (right) scored a spectacular goal during the match
West Ham defeated United in September 2-0 at London Stadium in the reverse match
Harry Maguire responds after a terrible United performance by losing to the Hammers
Not such an easy start
Manchester United will face Bournemouth, Aston Villa, Southampton, Crystal Palace and West Ham in their next five Premier League games.
But all of these teams picked up points at United earlier in the season.
Bournemouth defeated them 1-0 in early November. Villa won a 2-2 draw at Old Trafford in December.
United had only 1-1 draw in Southampton in August and had lost 2-1 to Palace last week at home.
West Ham defeated them 2-0 at London Stadium in September.
“It’s been a while since we’ve run a run like this. When I first came in it was also a good race, but we are confident. The players should be. They worked so hard in the closing period. ‘
The Norwegian believes that United is on the right track after seven difficult years since Sir Alex Ferguson retired and will continue to do what he believes is good to lead the revival.
He added, “If you’re concerned about what others think of you, you shouldn’t have this job. What I feel doesn’t matter. What I do is with the coaching staff, club, trying to improve us.
“I’m not saying that’s right or wrong, it’s just about the next game and I believe in a way of managing the club, players and staff and doing what I think is right.
“That’s what I’ve been doing more or less in football all my life – sometimes I succeed, sometimes I don’t.”
United plans to make changes after some players beat Tuesday’s victory in Brighton.
“I have to wait,” said Solskjaer. “If there are a few changes, don’t be surprised just because of the condition, and there are so many games. I have to take care of the players.
“It would be nice to play against a team that played so well against Sheffield United and Brighton, but let’s see how everyone goes after training. I have many reasons to play for the same team, but I also have reasons to rotate. ‘
United was beaten at home by Crystal Palace in late August in an early season setback
Marcus Rashford ruins a missed penalty during Palace’s 2-1 win at Old Trafford