Ole Gunnar Solskjaer explains decision to drop Eric Bailly against Liverpool

Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Eric Bailly was benched for his side’s clash against Liverpool because Victor Lindelof had been preparing for the game ‘all week’.

Bailly has been in fine form for the Red Devils in recent weeks and he was vital in recent, hard-fought wins against Burnley and Aston Villa.

The Ivorian was tipped to start at Anfield given the speed of the likes of Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah.

However, Lindelof was a surprise starter when the teamsheets were announced and Solskjaer says the Sweden international was rested against Burnley in order to get him ready for the trip to Anfield, while Fred and Scott McTominay have been reinserted to provide energy.

‘It’s a game where we need the energy of Scott and Fred,’Solskjaer told MUTV.

‘I thought Nemanja and Paul in midfield last time was incredible but this is a different game. We want different options in front of them. We want Paul one step higher up the pitch.

‘Victor has been training this week to be ready for this game to be prepared. I gave him the Burnley game off. ‘

United have a three-point lead at the top of the table and are in their strongest position at this stage of the season since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement.

Solskjaer opted to leave Edinson Cavani on the bench in favour of Anthony Martial, who appeared to sustain a hamstring strain against Burnley.

However, the Norwegian says Martial was suffering from cramp at the end of the victory at Turf Moor.

‘It was more of a cramp because he was working hard for the team when he comes off with cramp it means he’s given his all for the team,’ said Solskjaer.

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