Newcastle vs Man Utd: What Solskjaer Said After Team’s ‘Worst Start To League Season’

Newcastle vs Man Utd: What Solskjaer Said After Team's 'Worst Start To League Season'

Manchester United manager, Ole Solskjær stays optimistic despite shaky start to season/File Photo

Manchester United manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has bemoaned a lack of creativity in Sunday’s English Premier League (EPL) game at St James’ Park, where his side slipped to a 1-0 defeat to Newcastle United.

Concise News reports that Matty Longstaff scored on his league debut as The Magpies piled more misery on United.

Local lad Longstaff applied the finishing touch at the end of a counter-attack midway through the second half with a crisp low drive that secured Steve Bruce – on his 400th game as a Premier League manager – his first victory over the club he used to captain at the 23rd attempt.

The 19-year-old’s goal sealed a dream debut in Newcastle’s midfield alongside brother Sean Longstaff and condemned Manchester United to yet another away defeat as their winless run on the road stretched to an alarming 11 games.

The defeat leaves Solskjaer’s side languishing in 12th in the Premier League and in the midst of their worst start to a season in 30 years, while Newcastle climb out the relegation zone up to 16th after Bruce’s first home win since taking charge.

Speaking to MUTV and Sky Sports, Solskjaer reflected on the performance and the club’s current injury situation.

“We’re disappointed, of course we are.

“We do lack quite a few key players but that’s no excuse.

“The players worked hard, they ran their socks off but at the moment we’re in a position we’re not used to.

“The boys, some of them, lack that little bit of composure and confidence in the last bit and you can tell. We don’t create enough chances to win a game of football.”

On ‘struggling Marcus ‘Rashford

“He’s working hard.

“As I said to the boys at half-time today, you feel for him because he’s running, running and running and he doesn’t get the service.

“The first half was very poor, that was the poorest we’ve been, because we gave so many sloppy balls away, it seemed like we couldn’t control the ball and we couldn’t find the combinations.

“Of course, in the second half we dominated but we didn’t create enough.”

Injury problems

“[The lack of chances] is symptomatic of where we are at at the moment. We’re working hard, we stick together as a team but we don’t create.

“You can say, as you started, that we have loads of injuries and loads of players away and there are some attacking players away of course.

“We hope and expect them to come back firing on all cylinders.

“The players are working hard.

“The lads who were out there gave everything. But we’ve got six out today from the starting XI that started the Chelsea game so of course that’s going to affect a team, a group of players. It’s going to affect results. But we’ll work hard and get the quality back.”

Next match: Liverpool!

“Liverpool is a perfect game for us. The international break is also at the perfect time because their heads need a bit of airing.

“It wouldn’t help to have a meeting tomorrow. They will go away with their national teams, meet their team-mates and come back fresh.

“We have had a good time together, we have prepared since the first day of pre-season, we have stuck to the same principles. We have not got the result today but we have to keep carrying on.”

How long will ‘rebuilding’ take?

“It will take however long it will have to take [to improve] because it’s a journey we’ve started on and the culture is getting there. It’s a delight to work with the lads every single day because they’re hard-working. I can’t give you any time but we’ll get there.

“We’ve given ourselves a big, big uphill task to get among the top four, never mind top six, this season but it’s tight and we’ve just got to get a run together and get the confidence back in the boys.

“[As a club] we’ve come together and discussed the direction we’re going. If you only walk on sunny days you’ll never get to your destination.

“So we’ll have these days, we’ll have these downs. We’ve had a couple of them this year, or three defeats now already. It’s disappointing but we’ll keep on working.

“We know where we want to get to.”

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Ridwan is a trained communicator who specialises in football and squash. He has been published by African Examiner. He provides professional coverage of general news, politics and sports, and has interviewed some of the biggest names in the field - including the first Nigerian interview with South Africa's no. 1 male squash player, Jean-Pierre Brits. He is a proud Nigerian and campaigner for #NigeriaIsOurs.

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