Solskjaer laments another blown Manchester United lead

AP Photo/Dave Thompson
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David De Gea refused to blame the officials for a goofy goal at Old Trafford, where Manchester United drew Arsenal 1-1 on Monday.

The Red Devils led 1-0 when Bukayo Saka played Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang behind the back line, and the linesman raised his flag before the striker scored past De Gea.

[ RECAP: Man Utd 1-1 Arsenal ]

Referee Kevin Friend didn’t blow his whistle, though, and VAR upheld Aubameyang’s well-timed run.

“Well, it was a big mistake for us,” he said. “We gave away an important goal.”

De Gea admitted that the flag could be a bit distracting, but that it doesn’t stop his job of stopping Aubameyang from scoring.

“Of course it’s an issue if the linesman keeps the flag down but also we know there is a VAR, so if it’s offside, it’s offside. We need to keep focus on the game. It’s a goal for them. We need to learn from that mistake.”

Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer didn’t harp on the VAR part of things, saying his claims to the referee about a potential whistle boiled down to gamesmanship (“Sometimes you hear a noise and you try your luck, don’t you?”).

He was, however, upset with United’s inability to finish the job. For the third time this Premier League season, a 1-0 lead turned into a 1-1 draw. First Wolves, then Saints, now Arsenal.

“Another time we get 1-nil up and we don’t get the second goal. That’s the learning now for this team. We need to be more clinical. We’ll learn, definitely, but it’s a steep learning curve for a few. It’s a bad goal to give up.”

Solskjaer said the youth in the side are helping them start to build something, but that that’s simply a silver lining on Monday. He also said Marcus Rashford is 100 percent fit.