Wednesday Briefing: Donny's warning to Reds
Donny van de Beek believes Manchester United have to keep the work ethic high to confirm a place in the Champions League knockout stages.
The Reds are now three points clear in the section that was nicknamed the ‘Group of Death’ at the start of the tournament, after beating Istanbul Basaksehir 4-1 at Old Trafford on Tuesday.
After two wins against PSG and RB Leipzig to start Group H, United had a hiccup in Turkey to throw the pool open again, but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side now only need one point to confirm qualification and can seal it next Wednesday, when the Parisians visit Old Trafford.
“It is not finished but we are in a good position. We need to keep working and everything will be fine,” van de Beek told MUTV.
After the shock of the 2-1 defeat in the Basaksehir Faith Terim stadium three weeks ago, United stormed into a 3-0 lead after 35 minutes with two from Bruno Fernandes and a Marcus Rashford penalty.
Donny was pleased with how the Reds went about dismantling the Turkish champions, but admitted we could have handled a tricky second period better, as Basaksehir threatened to get back into the game - a warning sign for taking things for granted, going into the final two group games.
“It was a good reaction from the away game. [To win] 4-1 at home I think you can be happy,” said the former Ajax man.
“The first half was really good especially the first 30 minutes and we played nice football and scored nice goals.
“In the second half we lost too many balls and gave them some chances but the last five minutes we controlled the game again.
“We had some chances in the second half to make the fourth goal before we did but we lost too many balls, and then the control of the game you lose that. It was not good from our side.”
The Netherlands international played in more of a sitting role against the Turks with Fred, while Bruno Fernandes made hay in the more advanced engine room berth.
But the 23-year-old said he is comfortable wherever manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer plays him.
“It worked really well,” he said.
“Some games I play number ten and sometimes the coach needs me in the control position. That is fine for me because before, when I played at Ajax, I was playing in those positions, so it is okay.”
Top of the Group gallery
The Reds produced a classy performance to beat Istanbul Basaksehir at Old Trafford.
WHAT HAPPENED YESTERDAY?
You'll know all about our magnificent Old Trafford win by now!
Earlier in the day, we shared more fascinating insights from Wayne Rooney's UTD Podcast, including an explanation of why he wore a ripped shirt on his explosive Reds debut, against Fenerbahce, and what he did before the 2008 Champions League final - you won't believe it!
Juan Mata shared an insight into how fellow Spanish speaker Edinson Cavani is settling into his new life in Manchester, too.
WHAT'S HAPPENING TODAY?
We'll continue to provide reaction from the win over Basaksehir, including interviews, videos and quizzes.
After taking a one-day hiatus for the match, United Daily will be back, providing you with all the latest from across the club.
Wednesday also marks 15 years since we lost one of United's greatest-ever players, in George Best.