Ole: Last derby win should inspire us
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer believes Manchester United should aim for a repeat of our showing in December's derby victory when we take on Manchester City in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday.
The Reds swept the defending champions away during the first half-hour of our Premier League meeting, going on to win 2-1, and the Norwegian sees that victory, and the success over Tottenham at Old Trafford three days prior, as a blueprint for his side going forward.
“Well, we’ve got to aim for performances like that,” Solskjaer told reporters during his pre-match press conference
“We had two good days against Tottenham and City, in a short spell. So, we know we can do that physically, but every game lives its own life.
“When you get highs like that, I’m sure we will look back on it and say ‘that’s the Man United we want to see’. But, we can still improve on that one.”
Pep Guardiola’s side have won seven of their last eight matches in all competitions since the derby, easing past League Two side Port Vale in the Emirates FA Cup in their most recent outing.
In the same period, the Reds have won three home games and drawn one, while the away form has been mixed - before Saturday's stalemate at Wolves, a victory at Burnley was bookended by disappointing defeats to Watford and Arsenal. However, Ole believes anything can happen when two local rivals go up against each other.
“Of course, they [Man City] are back winning games and they’re confident,” he assessed. “But I think form goes out the window when we play each other.
“You go on the local-derby adrenaline and the atmosphere - that’s going to be important. And on any given day, any given game can change within a moment, with a referee’s decision, some luck, an injury or a red card.
“We know they’re a top team and I’ve admired Pep’s teams. They’ve raised the bar so much since Pep came - the standards he’s set and his teams have set, that’s something for us to aim for.”
This is the first time the sides have met over a two-legged tie since the 2010 League Cup semi-final, when United overturned a 2-1 loss away from home and defeated Roberto Mancini’s City team 3-1 at Old Trafford to secure progress to the final.
Solskjaer hinted that he wouldn’t get too carried away with a victory tomorrow, given that the second leg is still to come at the end of January.
“Well, there are two games so we have to know that when this game is finished it’s half-time.
“So, you’ve still got to go to the Etihad and finish the job off, if we do well tomorrow.
“It’s a two-game tie, but we just focus on this one now because it’s still three weeks until the next one.”
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