Solskjaer reacts to Newcastle defeat
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer rued a lack of creativity in Sunday's game at St James' Park, where Manchester United slipped to a 1-0 defeat to Newcastle United.
The Reds did fashion two good opportunities to take the lead in the first half, with Andreas Pereira's shot stinging the palms of Martin Dubravka and Harry Maguire heading inches wide of goal. However, it was a scrappy affair after the break, with Newcastle eventually breaking the deadlock as Matty Longstaff's powerful low effort whistled past De Gea into the back of the net.
Speaking to MUTV and Sky Sports, Ole reflected on the performance, the timing of the international break and our current injury situation.
WE DIDN'T CREATE ENOUGH
"We're disappointed, of course we are. We do lack quite a few key players but that's no excuse. The players worked hard, they ran their socks off but at the moment we're in a position we're not used to. The boys, some of them, lack that little bit of composure and confidence in the last bit and you can tell. We don't create enough chances to win a game of football.”
RASHFORD DEPRIVED OF SERVICE
“He’s working hard. As I said to the boys at half-time today, you feel for him because he’s running, running and running and he doesn’t get the service. The first half was very poor, that was the poorest we’ve been, because we gave so many sloppy balls away, it seemed like we couldn’t control the ball and we couldn’t find the combinations. Of course, in the second half we dominated but we didn’t create enough.”
WE NEED ATTACKING PLAYERS BACK FROM INJURY
"[The lack of chances] is symptomatic of where we are at at the moment. We’re working hard, we stick together as a team but we don’t create. You can say, as you started, that we have loads of injuries and loads of players away and there are some attacking players away of course. We hope and expect them to come back firing on all cylinders.”
LOOKING FOR SOLUTIONS
“[Where are they?] That's the million dollar question, now, isn’t it? Luckily for us it's now the international break. We get time to evaluate what’s been going on in the first eight games. Many of the games have been very similar. Of course we have analysed throughout but now is a period when we will sit down. Hopefully we'll get a few players back. It's my responsibility and I need to sort their heads out, that’s the main thing because young boys who are maybe lacking confidence, they need some help from the experienced players and us as staff and we’re working hard to find it.”
PLAYERS' ATTITUDE IS SPOT ON
"We are never happy when we don't win and we are going through a very difficult period, but it's not too dissimilar a position to where we were last season when I was disappointed with the attitude. But the attitude here is spot on."
WE'LL GET THE QUALITY BACK
“The players are working hard. The lads who were out there gave everything. But we've got six out today from the starting XI that started the Chelsea game so of course that’s going to affect a team, a group of players. It’s going to affect results. But we'll work hard and get the quality back.”
Twenty pics from our Premier League trip to Steve Bruce's Newcastle United.
CAUGHT OUT ON THE BREAK
“We’re doing well defensively, we’re not giving too many chances away but [the goal we conceded] today was a poor goal. From our own set piece, to be counter-attacked away from home. We shouldn’t do that. We should have learned from last year, Wolverhampton was one I can remember. There were a couple of others as well, Everton away, and that shouldn’t be the case. But they’re eager to score goals, they’re eager to win the game because that’s what we’re trying to do, to win games.”
OUR NEXT TEST
“Liverpool is a perfect game for us. The international break is also at the perfect time because their heads need a bit of airing. It wouldn't help to have a meeting tomorrow. They will go away with their national teams, meet their team-mates and come back fresh. We have had a good time together, we have prepared since the first day of pre-season, we have stuck to the same principles. We have not got the result today but we have to keep carrying on.”
WE KNOW WHERE WE WANT TO GET TO
“It will take however long it will have to take [to improve] because it's a journey we've started on and the culture is getting there. It’s a delight to work with the lads every single day because they’re hard-working. I can't give you any time but we’ll get there.
“We've given ourselves a big, big uphill task to get among the top four, never mind top six, this season but it's tight and we’ve just got to get a run together and get the confidence back in the boys.
"[As a club] we've come together and discussed the direction we're going. If you only walk on sunny days you'll never get to your destination. So we'll have these days, we’ll have these downs. We’ve had a couple of them this year, or three defeats now already. It’s disappointing but we’ll keep on working.
“We know where we want to get to.”
Reading this in our app? If not, you might miss some exclusive features not found on ManUtd.com. Download the Official App here.