Jesse Lingard and Arthur compete for the ball.

'We've got a big week ahead'

Wednesday 17 April 2019 07:00

Jesse Lingard says Manchester United must focus all our efforts on securing a Champions League spot for next season after the disappointment of being eliminated from this year’s competition.

United suffered a tough defeat at the Nou Camp, losing 3-0 to Barcelona and 4-0 on aggregate

However, Jesse is already looking ahead to the next challenge as the Reds attempt to secure a top-four finish.
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“The Champions League is a big competition and we'll be fighting to get back in,” our no.14 told BT Sport after the game. “We’ve got a big week ahead."

The Reds do indeed have a pivotal period with games against Everton, Manchester City and Chelsea to come.

With third to sixth in the table only being separated by three points, these upcoming matches could prove hugely significant if we are to secure our spot Europe's elite club tournament again next season.
While the scoreline suggests Barcelona won the quarter-final second leg with ease, Lingard believes had we taken our early chances it could have been a very different game.

“I thought we dominated in the first 15 minutes,” said Jesse. “We had a couple of chances and the game could have gone differently if we'd put them away.

“That's football. Chances in these big games are massive and if we take them it's a different game.
“We were always going to be underdogs coming into the game, but we had to back ourselves and believe and, like I said, for the first 15 minutes if it had gone our way it would have been a different game."

After the Reds’ impressive start, the game turned on Lionel Messi’s first-half double, which gave the hosts a 2-0 lead before the break.

While both goals were avoidable from a United point of view, Jesse said at times you have to applaud the brilliance of the diminutive Argentinian.

“He's one of the best players in the world and he's brought his A-game tonight,” said Lingard. “All we can do now is move on.”

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