Solskjaer's press conference
See what Ole said to the media about breaking Colchester down, Rashford's form and two more Manchester derbies...
Q: Ole, your team made it difficult in the first half - they certainly didn’t take their chances, but found their cutting edge in the second half… OGS: I thought we played well in the first half but, as you said, we were wasteful. I think we played miles better in the first half than the second half, but we scored. In games like this, you need the first goal to settle any doubt and then spaces will come and it will flow more. I thought we did ok, actually. They kept a clean sheet against Palace and Tottenham. We knew they were going to be hard to break down and, in the end, the first time they really went for it and had a chance, we counter attack and that settled everything. Q: It’s a bizarre thing, but the first time they showed any ambition you get the goal and never looked back form that… OGS: I was really happy. Sometimes, in games like this, you don’t take those opportunities. There won’t be many - it was the first time we had one and we really went for it. A great pass from Nemanja and a great finish by Marcus, but Sergio’s intent at going forward was the key. Q: I saw you say on Norwegian TV that you were better in the first half - that caused a bit of a reaction and it’s a strange thing to hear when you score three in the second half, can you explain why you think the first half was better? OGS: I thought we took our foot off the peddle, we didn’t press them, we let them have the ball, we started making decisions that we don’t normal do. We wanted to beat men when there was no space, shoot from not the right distances. It’s about learning and decision making all the time. Of course, missing chances, that can happen, like we did in the first half. But, still, we prodded, we were patient, we probed and we created chances. Q: What do you think of the draw? OGS: Fanatics days in Manchester! Of course, we do really respect them and, as I said after the derby last time, in my opinion, they’re the best team in England. They can out-football you, so we need to get our game-heads on and be ready for them again. But, we’ve shown them that we can cause them problems. I think they’ll be two fantastic games. Q: Marcus has got 14 goals this season, I think that’s his best for United in a single season. Is there a new way for him now? OGS: I was really pleased with him today because he kept his body language. They kept kicking him but he got up, he played, he ran, he had chances and made movements. He was a leader in the way he acted today, in the way he played. Good goal and his run set up Anthony for his goal. I was very pleased with Marcus and he knows when those two or three chances in then first half go in - but that will come, it’ll definitely come. Q: The League Cup semi-final, top four not out of reach, still in Europe - would you have taken that 12 months ago? OGS: Of course. We’re in a good place and the momentum is there at the moment. We’ve taken steps forward - sometimes, yeah, it’s a step backwards with a couple of draws that we’ve had, but if you look at the performances and results that we’ve had lately - if you take away Astana, which was a great experienced anyway for the kids, in the last nine, since we got beat at Bournemouth, we’ve won six and drawn three, and scored loads of goals. So, we’re on the right track. Q: After 12 months in change are United in a better position, do you think? Where will you be in 12 months time? OGS: Hopefully we’ll keep on improving. Of course, you can look at the table and the points tally and they are very similar to last year. But it’s a decision we made to rebuild. We’re a younger, more proactive and hungrier squad. We’re the youngest squad in the Premier League. It’s a joy to work with - it was a joy when I came in a year ago, don’t get me wrong, but sometimes you have to make decisions which you think are the right ones. Q: Ole, any top team needs world-class players, is it too early to say that Marcus Rashford has elevated his game to that level? OGS: Well, what is world-class? Marcus is developing and improving and is getting better and better. He has the potential to be top class - we’ll get a world-class player back very soon and we’ve missed him, of course. I’m sure we will improve and Marcus will improve in the next few months. Q: Is breaking down teams like Colchester the biggest challenge for this team? OGS: Today the challenge was scoring goals because we broke them down and created chances. It’s just a bit of quality in the finish. But, of course, if we can add that to the team, that we can dominate and create chances and be more clinical and ruthless, that will be another step forward for us. There have been many games we’ve dominated but not won and we’ve deserved to win. But, you don’t really deserve to win if you don’t score. We’ve got to develop that quality in the box. Q: Can you develop that, though? OGS: Yeah, definitely. There’s hunger there and they do extras. With the strikers, all the time, I was trying to hold Marcus back yesterday, but he wanted to do extra. It was two days after a game, the day before a game, but he was still on the training ground practising. That will come and we’re getting better and better. Q: The fact you didn’t win the League Cup as a player - of course it’s important to win the first trophy as a team, but, personally, does it give you extra motivation? OGS: No, I’d rather win the Champions League! It’s a cup we’re in and we want to win every tournament we’re in. We’re now in with a chance, two games and we’ve got a chance to get into the final. Q: After the performance against City the other week - Jamie Carragher said it was the best he’s ever seen anyone play against City - is the last thing you want to draw them straight away? OGS: I don’t know. We’ll see. We’ve looked at that game and we’re very pleased with the result and parts of that game, but there’s parts we need to do so much better. The first 10 minutes, you close your eyes and you’ve just got to hang in there. We’ve just got to stamp our authority more on them. There’s not many that can do, but we have to aim for that. I don’t think you’ll beat City three times in a row with the same tactics. So, we’ll have to try to do something better next time. I’m sure Pep will definitely have his team fired up.