United Briefing graphic featuring Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

United Briefing: We're in this together

Monday 22 March 2021 08:00

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer refused to condemn his players for the mistakes made in Sunday’s 3-1 defeat to Leicester City, insisting that the team and staff would share responsibility for the loss.

United would have expected to defend each of the Foxes’ three goals better and the first, scored by Kelechi Iheanacho, arrived following a mistake in the Reds’ build-up play on the edge of our own box.

But the Norwegian said he would not blame the players for mistakes made while playing the ball out from the back – not when the approach has worked well for us in the past.

Solskjaer's verdict on our 3-1 FA Cup defeat Video

Solskjaer's verdict on our 3-1 FA Cup defeat

"We win together and we lose together," says the boss, during our post-match interview at the King Power Stadium...

“We want them to build from the back,” emphasised Solskjaer. “I think we’ve been really solid, we’ve been really good and we’ve built a foundation to play from with what we’ve done.

“Of course, sometimes it goes wrong, but that’s acceptable. Everyone can make a mistake. We win together and we lose together: as a team.”
The process of playing the ball out from the back is relatively new in British football, but can benefit teams by drawing out opponents and creating greater areas of space in the middle of the pitch and the final third.

But, inevitably, mistakes made while building out from the back can lead to mistakes which gift opponents easy chances – which is what happened when Fred under-hit a pass to Dean Henderson, which was intercepted by Iheanacho.
Leicester 3 United 1: Ole's press conference Video

Leicester 3 United 1: Ole's press conference

Watch how the boss answered journalists' questions about the team and our performance at the King Power Stadium...

However, the Brazilian has become an important player for the Reds under Solskjaer, and the manager was in no mood to start singling out individuals for isolated errors, especially after United got back on level terms before the break through Mason Greenwood.

Instead, he rightly reiterated that goals were scored and conceded as a collective, and he reiterated his praise for the way the team had gone on a 30-match unbeaten away run domestically, since losing at Liverpool in early 2020. 


We'll release a special UTD Podcast with assistant manager Mike Phelan and start looking ahead to our players' international commitments in World Cup qualifiers and the Under-21 European Championship finals.

As usual, we will also take a look at how our loan stars have been faring, with James Garner impressing for Nottingham Forest and Jesse Lingard scoring again for West Ham United.

It is the anniversary of Ruud van Nistelrooy's solo goal against Fulham (2003), Wayne Rooney's long-ranger at West Ham (2014) and Juan Mata's two-goal show at Anfield a year later.

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United suffered the disappointment of exiting the FA Cup, leaving Leicester City to face Southampton and Chelsea to take on Manchester City in the semi-finals of the competition at Wembley. Ole's Reds are, of course, still battling to win the Europa League and will meet Spanish side Granada in the quarter-finals next month.

Elsewhere, in the Premier League, as already mentioned, Lingard scored and assisted Jarrod Bowen's goal as West Ham and Arsenal drew 3-3, with the Gunners coming back from 3-0 down to force a draw in the Premier League.

Tottenham recovered from their European setback to win 2-0 at Aston Villa in the evening fixture.