Man Utd: Solskjaer praises Pogba and Matic
Manchester United coach Darren Fletcher was delighted after Paul Pogba’s goal against Burnley and celebrated with Martyn Pert after the match, according to reports. The Red Devils now sit top of the Premier League table. And they’ll be hoping to open up a six-point lead at the summit when they lock horns with Liverpool on Sunday.
Manchester United weren’t at their best against Burnley, with Sean Dyche’s side plucky at Turf Moor.
But the Red Devils picked up all three points through Pogba, whose excellent volley gave them all three points.
And The Athletic say that, in the aftermath of the France international’s strike, Fletcher celebrated wildly in the stands.
It’s claimed he then fist-bumped Pert, another of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s coaching staff, after the final whistle.
And that speaks volumes.
This is a United side who are still learning to win, and win big. When the pressure is on.
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And Fletcher’s wild celebrations suggest this is a big moment for the Red Devils, who are still one of the youngest teams in the entire top flight.
This is exactly the sort of match they’d struggle in. Burnley, the exact type of opposition they’ve struggled against – at least at Old Trafford.
But whether United can now build on the result remains to be seen.
Few gave them a chance of challenging for the title earlier on in the season after defeats to Crystal Palace, Tottenham and Arsenal – all at Old Trafford.
But they’ve now impressively turned things around and, should they beat Liverpool, will be out in front in the race for the title.
Their fine form started with a 3-1 victory over Everton at Goodison Park, with Bruno Fernandes scoring twice and Edinson Cavani notching another.
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Fernandes was the hero against West Brom, scoring the only goal of the game, while Cavani struck twice to ensure they beat Southampton 3-2 at St Mary’s.
United benched the Portugal international for their match against West Ham in December.
But, after falling a goal down at the London Stadium, the Red Devils ran out 3-1 winners with Pogba, Mason Greenwood and Marcus Rashford all on target.
Sheffield United, Leeds, Wolves, Aston Villa and now Burnley have been beaten in the league in the time since.
And the Red Devils have also drawn with Leicester and Manchester City.
Solskjaer was delighted at seeing his United side go top of the table on Tuesday night, saying: “It’s a brilliant position to be in.
“Of course we know we’re going to the champions who have had an unbelievable three-and-a-half-seasons, we know it’s going to be a difficult game for us, but we are ready for it.
“We couldn’t have asked for a better time to play them because we are in good shape, good form and hungry, which is a good thing because these boys want to get better and that’s the test of their character and quality.”
In his post-match press conference, Solskjaer added: “We’re looking forward to it.
“Of course, we enjoy being where we are [at the top of the league] at any time, be that the first game or the last game, which is a big, big difference.
“We’re looking forward to it, it’s a great test of where we’re at against a good team.
“We’re almost halfway through the season so it’s a little bit of an indication of where you’re at, but no one will remember the league table on January 12.”
United had a Harry Maguire goal chalked off against Burnley, but Solskjaer wasn’t overly fussed.
“We’ve just got to accept once in a while that decisions will go against you and Harry’s goal was a perfectly good one, so it’s a decision we shouldn’t be sat there talking about,” Solskjaer added.
“[Brady’s last-man] foul against Cavani and the red card, of course you go back to foul Luke did.
“I’ve not seen it yet, so I can’t really comment on that one.
“But half-time helped us. I thought we came out second half and played really well and deserved the win.”
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