Romelu Lukaku warms up for Manchester United

Lukaku happy with any role in Solskjaer's attack

Monday 25 February 2019 22:30

Romelu Lukaku is ready to play anywhere Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wants him to, in a bid to answer Manchester United’s potential injury problems in attack ahead of Wednesday’s Premier League match at Crystal Palace.

Marcus Rashford finished the 0-0 stalemate with Liverpool with his ankle “like a balloon” according to the Reds' caretaker manager.

Anthony Martial was unable to make it back into the squad for Sunday's match, following his groin injury that forced him to also miss the Emirates FA Cup win at Chelsea.

It could leave Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez as United’s only senior forwards for the trip to Selhurst Park.

Lukaku has been used in a wide right role while Rashford has been in the central position lately but the Belgian is content to do whatever job is asked of him.

“Left, right or up front, it doesn’t matter to me," Romelu told the media after the Liverpool game.

"Playing for this club is an honour and I just try to do my best in whichever position I play in. If it is on the right then I will try to create chances, which I did against Liverpool, and if it is up front then I will try to score goals.

“At the end of the day I just try and help my team-mates out and try to win matches.

Romelu Lukaku posed Liverpool's defenders some problems on Sunday.

“As long as the manager wants to use me I will do my best to help the team out. We have a number of injuries but we have to stay positive and have that positive mentality.

“We are Manchester United and we have to go and win wherever.”

The resolve of Solskjaer's men was certainly tested against Jurgen Klopp’s side in Sunday’s 0-0 draw after three players had to go off in the first half through injury, including Jesse Lingard who himself had come on as a substitute to replace Juan Mata. 

However, those three changes and major reshuffles in the space of 22 first-half minutes couldn’t fully disrupt a dogged United team.

“You always want to win big games like this but for us it was about being mentally strong after having players injured. We had to be resilient and keep trying to score,” said Lukaku.

“You just have to adapt. We had players coming off the bench who were trying to help out the team. You have to make sure those coming on help out the team and that is what we tried and that is what we did. Credit to them who came in and did their job. We were resilient.

“We had some close chances but it was all about mental strength, making sure we didn’t lose and grabbing at least the point. Obviously you want to win but now we have to move forward and focus on Crystal Palace.

“Roy Hodgson will set up his Palace team really well. We know that. We will prepare and we need to recover properly because today was a physical game. Tactically and with our preparations we will be ready to go again.”

United’s defence nullified one of the Premier League’s most dangerous strike forces in Mo Salah, Roberto Firmino (replaced in the first half by Daniel Sturridge) and Sadio Mane.

It meant another clean sheet for David De Gea, who racked up his century of shut-outs in the Premier League, and Lukaku was quick to praise his team's rearguard.

“That is what Ole wants from us. Everybody is talking about us being offensively really good but defensively we are doing really well,” added the Belgian.

“Chris (Smalling), coming back in for the last couple of games, has been brilliant and Luke Shaw has been the best player of the season for me. Ashley Young has been consistent and David De Gea is the best number one in the world.

“From the midfield to the front we try to help out and make sure the defence has an easy task. We did that against Liverpool and it was all about the team.”