Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Solskjaer: Why the second half was better

Sunday 21 February 2021 22:26

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer admitted his Manchester United side had to step up a gear after Newcastle United posed first-period problems at Old Trafford.

Although Marcus Rashford broke the deadlock with a brilliant goal, Allan Saint-Maximin soon levelled for the visitors and the unpredictable Frenchman threatened to cause further issues before the Reds boss rallied his troops at the interval.

After the break, Solskjaer's men upped the ante and eventually streaked clear with Daniel James's second strike in four days and the 17th successful penalty of Bruno Fernandes's ever-burgeoning United career, ensuring we ran out 3-1 winners.

No wonder Ole was delighted with the way his half-time instructions were carried out..
Solskjaer: Quick passing was key Video

Solskjaer: Quick passing was key

Ole was full of praise for James, Matic and Shoretire after a pleasing night all-round at Old Trafford...


"We had to up the tempo a little bit, especially in the last third, and I felt we managed to do that. It's always difficult after an away game in Europe to get going. We've had enough games this season, so it took until half-time really, even though we dominated possession and we had a lot of the ball, we couldn't create too many big opportunities."


"It was about moving the ball quicker and being a bit cleverer in our positioning. I felt in the second half we found our positions better and [we scored] some good goals."


"He never disappeared, he's been working hard behind the scenes, he's always been available. He's always a player that you can use in a few different positions with his energy and pace. He's learning the game and I'm very happy for him. We've worked with him. We try to help everyone. Of course, Dan came from the Championship up to Man United and if you hit a few goals in your first few games, it's bound to take some energy away from you, all those headlines and media attention. But he's knuckled down and he's really worked hard to get back to full fitness and maybe more so [to build] confidence, to believe in himself. That's the main thing, to come past that little doubt, and now he knows he's a good player."


“We have a strong squad, we have a strong team. We missed out on quite a few players today, but Nemanja, I thought he grew more and more into the game, second half especially. I thought he was really dominant.”


“Yeah, of course, and he’s going to play many games for us if he keeps doing what he’s doing. He’s training really well, good boy with a good head on him and hopefully he’ll have a good career with us.”

Highlights: United 3 Newcastle 1 Video

Highlights: United 3 Newcastle 1

Goals from Rashford, James and Fernandes helped the Reds beat Newcastle to reclaim second spot in the Premier League...


"They had a few too many corners early on and of course, they're always going to be a threat there. I'm disappointed with the goal we conceded but then again, it was a good reaction in the second half."


“Hopefully, fingers crossed. The treatment table is getting crowded, so hopefully we’ll get some back. I hope so, at least one or two of them.”


"We can't control any other team, we've just got to control ourselves and be the best possible Man United in every single game. That's the demands and the season is going to be demanding so you never know. Things happen. There are many surprises in football."

*Quotes taken from BT Sport & MUTV.