Scott McTominay in action against Club Brugge

McTominay: We'll take it in our stride

Thursday 12 March 2020 12:00

Scott McTominay says it’s a shame Manchester United fans can’t watch their team in action tonight.

The game in Linz is being played behind closed doors following Austrian government guidance around the coronavirus pandemic, but Scott adds that the players need to do their jobs regardless of the situation.

In an exclusive interview with MUTV’s Stewart Gardner out in Linz, the Scotland international also talks about how he’s rediscovered his goalscoring touch since returning from injury – scoring against Club Brugge and, memorably, netting the clinching goal in the Manchester derby on Sunday.

You can check out the video and full transcript of the Q&A below…

McTominay assesses the challenge of LASK away Video

McTominay assesses the challenge of LASK away

Scott tells us how strange it will be to play behind closed doors, especially after that City strike on Sunday…

Scott, first of all, have you come down to earth from the weekend yet, as to the impact of your goal from everyone you know I imagine? Friends, family, social media?
“Yeah obviously you try and stay away from social media as much as you can sort of thing and not take too much notice of the outside but not for that, because that was an amazing moment for me and my family. My dad was in the crowd with my sister’s fiancé, so that was an amazing feeling for them, first of all, being in the stadium, but when you’re playing you just know you’ve got to keep going, you’ve got to keep doing the right things. A goal is a goal, but it was a special one at the same time, so obviously I’ll look back at that in a couple weeks and think I can’t believe it, but for now we’ve got games coming thick and fast and obviously for us we have to keep going.”

Five goals from midfield. I remember you playing up front quite a lot for the U23s. Was that more of your game that you want to bring into it as well?
“Yeah it's always been part of my game, scoring goals from midfield and obviously making the box late and scoring from outside the box as well. Headers as well, I need to do better with them as well, so obviously there are a lot of things that I need to improve on. Obviously goalscoring is something that I take very, very seriously and obviously for myself it’s nice to get a few goals in the last couple of weeks, coming back from injury, but you need to keep scoring as regularly as you can and pushing towards the end of the season for trophies as well.”

Talking about playing for the reserves, you played a lot, not behind closed doors but basically with no fans. Will it be a little bit like that on Thursday?
“Yeah you have to take it in your stride. We’re trained professionals, you have to adapt to the scenario you’re in and obviously it’s a shame that there’s not going to be any fans there tomorrow. For our fans it’s a real shame and we’re so upset that they can’t come and watch us, but I’m sure there’ll be plenty more opportunities for them to come away and hopefully we get this virus sorted out as soon as possible.”

Does it affect preparations? Sometimes players react to the noise of the crowd and it has an impact on the game itself, it must be so strange?
“Yeah you see that at the weekend, the impact of the crowd was phenomenal. You see the reaction of the players from the crowd; it is a real credit to the fans. Every single week it is an amazing atmosphere and for us it will be a strange atmosphere, but I’m sure all the boys have not played in front of 75,000 their whole career, so you have to adapt to the situation and not take too much notice of what’s going on other than on the pitch.”

McTominay: It will be strange Video

McTominay: It will be strange

Our central midfielder muses on what it will be like to play in front of no fans in Austria tomorrow...

They’ve got an excellent home record, LASK. Naturally you won’t know a huge amount about them, but I guess you won’t be taking them lightly?
“Yeah we know about them. We know enough about them to go out there and put a performance in tomorrow. Obviously the manager and the coaching staff have reiterated the game plan and the things we need to do, the things we can do better as well. So for us we are ready to go and we’re very concentrated as well.”

And when you look at this competition, if you get through it then you’re in the quarter-finals and you start to think it could be one where you can go a long way, maybe even the distance?
“Yeah, that’s so important that we have that mindset of going the distance and every competition that we’re in it’s not acceptable just to put a competition to the side and not concentrate on other ones. We’ve got a big enough squad now where we need to have full focus on every competition and for us it’s so important to get trophies and the manager and the coaching staff have reiterated those points to us. We just have to keep pushing in the league and obviously the cup competitions we’re in.”

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