Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had plenty to say after Manchester United failed to clinch a knockout round place in the UEFA Champions League on Matchday 5.
The Red Devils fell 3-1 to Paris Saint-Germain at Old Trafford on Wednesday and will need get a result from RB Leipzig on Tuesday if they want to reach the Round of 16.
“Two teams that, when you see the team sheet, you think there might be goals in the game because there’s loads of attacking talent,” Solskjaer said. “We needed a bit more clinical finishing. We should’ve finished the game midway in the second half because I thought that period they were there for the taking.”
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Even worse? United loss goal scorer Marcus Rashford to injury in the second half, though it doesn’t seem too serious.
“It’s a niggling shoulder injury,” Solksjaer said. “Let’s see how quickly he can recover. Hopefully he will be ready for the West Ham game but we don’t know.”
Let’s see how quickly United can recover from Wednesday’s loss, which was 1-1 until the 69th minute and quickly went downhill.
Marquinhos scored and Fred took his second yellow card moments later for, presumably, the follow-through of his ball-winning lunge to dispossess Ander Herrera.
The thing is, Fred probably should’ve been sent off in the first half by the letter of the law. The Brazilian went head-to-head with Leandro Paredes, who made a meal of the contact and got the referee to head to the pitchside monitor.
Surprisingly, the ref produced a yellow. For that, Solskjaer knows there was some good fortune. For the second, he eyes former United man Ander Herrera with a dose of skepticism.
“Fred shouldn’t put his head towards him,” Solskjaer said. “I don’t think he touched him. I thought maybe he was a bit lucky to stay on when the referee gave anything … Fred had played really well. We spoke about staying calm, staying on your feet and the second yellow card is nowhere near a foul. Ander knows that. He definitely knows that.”
For what it’s worth: Fred definitely touched him.
So United heads to Germany level with Leipzig and PSG on nine points a piece. The Red Devils do not hold the tiebreaker on PSG but their 5-0 win over Leipzig at Old Trafford gives them the edge should they collect a point.
“We go into a game of football wanting to win,” Solskjaer said. “The games against PSG and Leipzig at home showed how much we’ve developed in these types of games. It was just about finishing today and then we’d be smiling.”
United was outshot 13-12 and put five of its shots on frame. Anthony Martial had two big chances to add to their score line, but make no mistake about the performance of Neymar and PSG. Les Parisiens put were credited with six “big chances” to United’s two (SofaScore).
"Maybe I should have taken Fred off, but he's been playing really well."
"The second one isn't a yellow card, Ander Herrera knows that as well. Ander knows."
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer gives his view on the major talking point as Man Utd fall at home to PSG.
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) December 2, 2020