Solskjaer's verdict on Chelsea clash
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer praised the fans' support of David De Gea as Manchester United battled to a 1-1 draw with Chelsea on a potentially crucial afternoon at Old Trafford.
The Reds raced out of the blocks with birthday boy Juan Mata breaking the deadlock in the 11th minute. However, the Blues hit back just before half time when Marcos Alonso tucked away the rebound from David De Gea's parried save.
After the break, United were dealt two injury blows with first Marcus Rashford and then Eric Bailly having to be withdrawn. The Ivorian was taking part in his first match since our Champions League second leg against Paris Saint-Germain in early March and seems unlikely to feature in our final two league games.
Speaking to MUTV and Sky Sports, Ole defended the performance of De Gea, assessed our top-four chances with two league games to go and discussed whether the injuries had an impact on the flow of the second half.
A DRAW WAS A FAIR RESULT
"In the first half we did what we hoped. We got at them, created chances, got the first goal and played some nice football. In the second half we just didn’t seem to get that urgency back and that quality and tempo in our game. The mood in the dressing room at half-time was good, everyone supports each other and everyone supported David. They felt good in the game but after that we just couldn't find the quality and tempo that we had in the first half. Both teams could have won it. Probably none of us deserved to win it so a draw is a fair result."
WE SUPPORT DAVID AND EACH OTHER
"David’s been unbelievable for this club and that just says everything about the supporters, because we do support each other. There's no chance that anyone can blame him for losing many points for us, so he’s been unbelievable. He will admit himself he could have stopped that goal, but that is football. He has got to rise again, wake up tomorrow and look forward."
THE LACK OF TEMPO IN THE SECOND HALF
"There was maybe some tired legs out there, tired heads. We needed to win the game, we didn’t manage to get the quality that we had in the first half. We had that one chance cleared off the line with Marcos [Rojo] and they had a decent chance with [Gonzalo] Higuain, so all in all it’s a draw between two teams that have been fighting to get this fourth position.
"I don’t think we can blame injuries. We just wanted to keep the tempo going. We’re hoping Eric’s not too badly injured. Rashy’s struggled with his shoulder and he managed to play for an hour, but couldn’t do any more."
United v Chelsea gallery
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TWO GAMES TO GO IN THE RACE FOR FOURTH
"I don’t think we can give up until it’s theoretically over, but of course it’s a big mountain to climb. We need to focus on those last two games, do our best for ourselves, win games and see what the other games throw up. The end of a season throws up a few marginal decisions, strange results, so anything can happen.
"We still want to finish the season on a high and let’s see where that takes us now. Let’s see how many points we can get."
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