Solskjaer hints at new Man Utd quality that can help them make decisive leap to a cup final

Solskjaer hints at new Man Utd quality that can help them make decisive leap to a cup final

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer believes Manchester United can build from a solid defensive base to try and reach their first cup final under his management.

Solskjaer guided United to three semi-finals last season, and has now already led them to another this term.

United left it late before Edinson Cavani and Anthony Martial scored the decisive goals against Everton in the Carabao Cup.

They will face rivals Manchester City in January for the right to play in the final. Still yet to concede a goal in the competition this year, Solskjaer thinks his squad have a stronger belief at present.

Asked about their chances of going further than last year and lifting a trophy, he told Sky Sports: “We know that when we defend well we have players to win us the game.

“Spirit in camp is good, winning gives energy and gives you a boost so we head into Boxing Day positive.

“A semi-final is sometimes worse than the final because it’s the worst possible time to lose a game and go out of the competition.”

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United showed patience at Goodison Park as they eventually broke down Everton.

They showed the kind of traits Solskjaer was discussing, building from their clean sheet to take their chances late on.

The first goal came from Cavani in the 88th minute, and Solskjaer knew it was a game-changing moment.

He explained: “You never know what will happen in football, the first goal always changes games.

“As long as we were in the game I knew my substitutes could come on and make an impact. Luke [Shaw] has strength and power down the side so we tried to swap the dynamics of the game.

“Very good start, the first 20-25 minutes we were excellent and should’ve been two or three goals up. They made a few good saves and then had a good spell just before half-time but last 20 minutes or so we played well.

“It was cagey at times – there and back and flowing, attacking and defending but you’re always confident if it opens up a bit with the pace we have.

“Cavani should’ve scored three in the first half but he is a top striker, movement, quality and the goal was excellent.”

Solskjaer plays down Cavani incident

There was some controversy when Cavani clashed with Yerry Mina earlier in the second half. Had VAR been in use, it could have been looked into as a potential sending off.

However, Solskjaer thinks their clash was nothing worthy of punishment.

He said: “Nothing in it, two South Americans that have had a few battles before.

“They met in Copa America qualifiers so no this was a proper game of football. With fans, tackles, yellow cards and chances at both ends, I enjoyed it.”

READ MORE: Ancelotti urges Everton to shift focus as he denies Carabao Cup ‘regrets’


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