Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has said that his side needs three more players to challenge for the Premier League trophy next season. The United boss also commended his players for downing Manchester City in the Manchester derby to keep their Champions League hope alive.
Anthony Martial and Scott McTominay scored for United on Sunday as the Red Devils defeated Man City 2-0 to record a third win over their neighbours, twice in the league and in one leg of the Carabao Cup semi-final. United’s goals from Martial in the 37th minute and McTominay in injury time came with the help of mistakes by City goalkeeper Ederson.
Reacting to the win during his post-match press conference, Solskjaer believes the results show United have the capacity to build a future title challenge, insisting that his team is only going to get better.
Solskjaer said: “For me, it shows we are on the right track and improving and we are Manchester United and looking to catch the teams in front of us.
“We feel we are improving all the time. “We know we lack one, two, three players to be considered a title contender and some experience and we know that. We are just going to start talking about going up the table, getting more points.”
Speaking about what he liked about the match, Solskjaer claimed that he now has a team giving everything for the shirt and praised the players for their attitude and the manner they played.
Solskjaer said: “It’s a privilege to be the manager of players with this attitude, they give it everything they’ve got.
“They’re going to improve as players. The fans and players love it.
“You can say it’s only three points but to beat a team like City, especially with the problems we’ve had is fantastic. We’re delighted with the outcome.
“What a day they’ve had today, both the players and the fans. Of course, they make us defend – that’s just the type of team they are but if our fans can see players with commitment and attitude and desire then we’ve done our job as a coach today.
“At times we pressed them and pushed them back, we tried to be aggressive with the wing-backs and three upfront. When we hit the press I think we made them make mistakes and we’re happy with the result. At times you’d like to defend with the ball but I’m not going to complain.”
Solskjaer also hailed his players for putting to work moves planned on the training ground. He singled out Bruno Fernandes when Martial latched on to a chipped free-kick from the Portuguese for the opener.
The United boss added that the club is now on an upward trajectory, going 10 games unbeaten across all competitions since Fernandes’ arrival in January.
“[Fernandes has energised] the whole place, the whole club.
“He has everything, he works hard, he is humble and has the desire and commitment but also has the X factor.
“He’s a risk-taker, has courage and is brave enough to make mistakes. If you make enough mistakes they will be corrected into fantastic assists or goals.”
He added: “It’s a privilege to be the manager of a squad of players with this attitude,” Solskjaer added. “They give us absolutely everything they’ve got every time they play and you can’t ask for more.
“We’re going to improve, we’re going to improve as a team, they’re going to improve as players. They want to learn as well and they listen to the advice we give them.
“We know we lack one, two, three players and some experience to be considered title contenders, we know that and we are not going to start talking about that now. We need to talk about getting up the table, getting some points, challenging for the top four because Chelsea and Leicester are too far ahead for my liking.”