Man Utd’s extra recovery days has done wonders before Man City semi-final

Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says he has a “very strong squad” available for their Carabao Cup semi-final against Manchester City after being afforded a much-needed five-day break.

The Red Devils can reach their first cup final since 2018 by toppling City at Old Trafford on Wednesday night, with former manager Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham side awaiting in the Wembley showpiece after their 2-0 win over Brentford.

Solskjaer only has one injury doubt heading into the Manchester derby, as Victor Lindelof is still struggling with a back problem and could therefore miss out.

Edinson Cavani, who will be serving the second of his three-match suspension for an offensive social media post, is the only United star ruled out entirely.

Solskjaer believes his side have benefitted from a recent break after their New Year’s Day victory over Aston Villa, having been forced to play once every three days over the Christmas period.

“Yeah, they’re bright,” the Norwegian told club media on Tuesday.

“They had a couple of days of recovery, not recovery, but [it’s been] lighter. We’ve had a couple of days to prepare.

“Of course, the training is just after we’re talking, so we haven’t had the training this morning. Victor has been training, he's been with us. Edinson is suspended.

“Apart from that we have a very strong squad to choose from.”

United will move one step closer to lifting their first trophy for four years if they get the better of City, having last claimed silverware in their 2017 Europa League triumph.

And Solskjaer insists the current side will begin to win trophies on a more regular basis once they get over the line again.

“We want to go one step further,” he said.

“I speak from my own experience. When I won the first league title at Manchester United, it became a drug, celebrating with your team- mates on the pitch with a trophy.

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“We won it when Wimbledon took points off Liverpool in 1997, but we still had a celebration and it became a thing, you become addicted to winning.

“It can be huge for the team. I think we won the league the year after and I had to retire after that, but that team grew so much from those years – and we have now added some players in our group that hopefully can give us that extra edge in the semis compared to last season.”

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