Kieran reveals important behind-the-scenes focus

Sunday 04 April 2021 08:00

Kieran McKenna says the recent international break afforded Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and his coaching staff important time to reflect on the season so far and to work on plans for a strong end to the campaign.

While a large number of players have been plying their trade with their countries in the last two weeks, a small group have been working hard at the Aon Training Complex alongside Ole and his staff.

Club media's Mark Sullivan caught up with first-team coach McKenna last week to discuss what the Reds have been up to during the international break and McKenna explained how it's been a useful period ahead of the final few weeks of the 2020/21 season.

"It’s been good, it’s been incredible really with the follow on from last season, it’s almost been two seasons on top of each other really, with the quick turnaround from the European campaign last year and finishing that, so it’s been hectic for the staff as well as the players," reflected Kieran.
McKenna focused on home straight Video

McKenna focused on home straight

Kieran McKenna lifts the lid on the work at the Aon Training Complex during the recent break from action...

"It’s been good to have a few days to have a breather and a chance to have some meetings with the staff and analyse and review like we always do, but with a bit more time to make sure we go into the back-end of the season fresh and focused, and we can transfer that to the players as well. 

"We’re mostly looking at an individual perspective on weeks like this," he added. "Obviously, it’s been a pretty hectic schedule, we had the large majority away on international duty, but we ended up with six or seven players here and it’s been good. We’re able to look at them to see what they need individually to help them for the rest of the season really.

"[For the first week] that was mostly a rest, for most, we did some light training, but it was very much giving some time to recover mentally and physically. Last week was a good chance for us to work individually on aspects of their game, technical or physical, that they can improve on and really emphasise to help them in the end of the season. It was very much a good chance to work with high staff numbers, low player numbers, very specific with the work to try and set the boys who were here up for a strong end to the season."
Kieran also revealed Ole and the staff kept a close eye on the players' progress during their time away with their countries.

"For sure, normally us coaches can’t get away from football anyway, so I’ve had all the internationals on in my house this week and I know the other staff are the same," he said.

"It’s been good, you always watch them wishing the best for the players hoping that they play, that they play well, that they stay injury-free. It’s always a mixed bag, some go away and do well, for some, the trip doesn’t go so well for them, so you’re just wishing them the best and hoping they come back fresh and fit then, when they do come back in, you can get their focus back to Man United and what we need to do as a team.
"We were really disappointed with the last game against Leicester and how that finished off," added Kieran. "But on the other hand, there are a lot of positives to take from the run over the last few months.

"I’m sure knowing the group and knowing them as characters, when everyone comes back in and everyone’s in the same room, they’ll be very much focused towards the end of the season, looking forward to achieving their goals and finishing really strongly this year."