Solskjaer's verdict on a thumping win

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer praised the hard work of his players as Manchester United overpowered RB Leipzig to record a thumping 5-0 win in the Champions League.

The Reds took a slender 1-0 lead into the break thanks to Mason Greenwood’s strike, having battled hard against the intense style of our German opposition, before picking them off in the second period after the introduction fresh legs – including hat-trick man Marcus Rashford.

Here are the main comments from the manager's post-match interviews:

A TEAM EFFORT

“He came on, did well – the impact, of course, we want that from the subs. That’s only possible though when the others have laid the groundwork and what a shift they put in. Because they do make you work Leipzig, the high press, the counter press, the intensity and we had to really dig deep and work hard for each other. Spaces open up when you’re winning, of course, and we knew that today was a day that we had to rest a few because this season is relentless, so we could use the squad. This group is coming together, of course we’ve added a few quality players and the more quality you have and spirit you have, the better chance you have of a performance.”

Ole's verdict on five-star winVideo

FIRST SHOT, FIRST GOAL FOR GREENWOOD

“He normally does that with his first shots, he’s so efficient in front of goal – a great finisher and I'm very pleased for him. His timing of his run, a good pass from Paul [Pogba]. I wasn’t sure if he was on or off, it was so tight this call by the referee and we were on the lucky side today.”

RUTHLESS FINISHING

“Yeah we have to be [ruthless] in games like this. You play against a semi-finalist last season in the Champions League, just a couple of months ago, and you’re not going to get too many chances and if you get one or two, of course they open up and the spaces appear for us and we had done the hard work by then.”

VAN DE BEEK’S FIRST HOME START

“Donny is a fantastic player and a fantastic boy and you see the work he puts down, both on and off the ball. You see the defensive shape with him, he covers the ground, he’s so clever with his movement.”

MIDFIELD OPTIONS

“I think we have an abundance of good midfielders at the club but I don’t want to get too far ahead of myself, but today I think it worked. The work off the ball, it was incredible. Nemanja, Fred, Paul, Donny: all four of them worked their socks off. That’s the basis of the team. If you can work and work and win the ball in good situations you create chances. I’m sure Fred covered every single blade of grass on that pitch. It’s unbelievable how that boy just recovers for the next one. The squad is good and gives us options – 4-3-3, a diamond, 4-2-1-3 or whatever we want to call it.”

CLEAN SHEET

“We defended really well and that’s very important when you win the ball back, but then when you have it they are so quick to counter-press you. They are so energetic. [In the] first half, it was hard to play through the press, but we kept at it. The boys never didn’t want the ball; they always wanted it in tight situations and that pays dividends in the second half when you play, spaces open up and in the end you win by a comfortable margin in a very difficult game.”

SHOWING STRENGTH

We work on our consistency of course. Every player knows he have hard work and graft and that’s the key. Suddenly, we’re running and we’ve got players who are fitter, stronger and sharper. For me, the consistency has been there since February. It has been getting better and better. The first league game was very disappointing and there were the circumstances with the Tottenham defeat. We’re getting there and today was a performance with a great attitude, hard work and working for each other. The squad was rotated and we’re in a really good state at the moment.

Solskjaer's post-match press conferenceVideo

TWO FROM TWO IN GROUP

“We’ve started really well. Of course, we came back after the international break knowing that this month is going to be a testing one and we’ve started well. But there are three massive games coming up. Three games in six days, so we’ll have to rotate. We’ll have to repair and rest and recover.”

UPDATE ON TELLES

“He’s been out now for a little while. He’s tested positive for the coronavirus. But he has no symptoms; he’s fine and we can’t wait to get him back.”

LOOKING AHEAD TO ARSENAL

“We made some changes today because of Sunday, because you’ve got to be ready for that because, in the league, we have a game fewer than other teams as well, so we have to pick up points.”

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