Lindelof: Champions League spot is deserved

Friday 26 May 2023 07:00

Victor Lindelof is pleased that Manchester United have completed our objective of sealing Champions League football for next term, and he believes it is well deserved.

After fellow Champions League chasers Liverpool dropped points at the weekend, with a draw at home to Aston Villa, United approached our latest Old Trafford test, against Chelsea, knowing that a point would be enough to confirm our return to Europe’s elite club competition for the 2023/24 campaign.

The Reds did all we needed to, and more, with an emphatic 4-1 win over Frank Lampard’s Blues, meaning we also leapfrog Newcastle United into third in the Premier League standings with one game remaining.

Lindelof: That was the target for us Video

Lindelof: That was the target for us

Victor Lindelof is thrilled to have brought Champions League football back to Old Trafford...

We are now guaranteed of a place in the top four for the forthcoming season and will hold onto our third-place spot by matching Newcastle’s result in the last domestic league game of the season on Sunday – as the Reds host Fulham, and the Magpies travel to Chelsea.

With returning to the Champions League a long-term target of ours, Lindelof was feeling understandably positive after that goal was achieved with our win on Thursday night.

“Yeah, of course, that was always the target for us,” our no.2 told club media, when asked whether he was pleased to have guaranteed a place in the top four.

I’m very pleased that we achieved that today.

“We knew we could have secured that spot [tonight] and we went out there and we won the game, so I think everyone is very pleased with that.”

Asked about the difference between now and last year, the defender continued: “I think the mentality and the effort everyone puts in. I think everyone knows exactly what to do on the pitch, we have a system and everyone knows what they’re doing out there.

Matchday Review: United v Chelsea Video

Matchday Review: United v Chelsea

Watch the MUTV post-match show, featuring Dion Dublin, following our win over Chelsea...

“I think this season we’ve been performing some great football and I think we really deserve this spot in the Champions League.”

After injuries sustained by Raphael Varane and Luke Shaw early last month, the door was opened for Lindelof to make his return to the XI for the closing stages of the campaign.

The defender has performed admirably since, starting 10 consecutive games, which have yielded seven clean sheets with the Reds looking resolute at the back.

“Of course, I think I’ve been performing well,” Lindelof continued, when asked about his individual form.

Report: United 4 Chelsea 1


The Reds' penultimate Premier League outing of the campaign is a joyous one at Old Trafford.

“And I think every time I’m on the pitch, I just want to help my team-mates to perform and to win the game and I think I’ve done that. So, of course, I’m very pleased with my performances.”

United now approach our game of the season, at home, having not lost at Old Trafford in the Premier League since the first outing of the season. That defeat came against Brighton & Hove Albion, way back in August, in Erik ten Hag’s first competitive match in charge.

Fulham are our opponents on Sunday as we will look to round off our fine campaign at the Theatre of Dreams with another positive result – before attentions turn to the FA Cup final the following weekend, against Manchester City at Wembley.

Erik's press conference Video

Erik's press conference

Erik ten Hag briefs the media following our win over Chelsea, which sealed Champions League football for United...

“It’s always a pleasure to play here at home and to have the fans behind us all the time,” added Victor.

“We wanted to make Old Trafford our fortress and I think we’ve done that this season so we can’t thank the fans enough for that.

“Right now, we just had to win today and then [it's] a big game on Sunday, we want to perform and keep the good record at home. And then after that, we can start focusing on what comes next.”