Saturday 17 August 2019

'We need 15 points' - Ole Gunnar Solskjaer insists his side can still claim top four finish despite Wolves defeat

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP) /
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP) /
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer insisted his side will claim a top-four finish in the Premier League if they can collect 15 points from their final six games, as he tried to put a gloss on their 2-1 defeat against Wolves.

After taking the lead at Molineux, United were rocked by the side that knocked them out of the FA Cup at the same venue, with Chris Smalling's 77th minute own goal proving decisive on a night when Ashley Young was sent off for the visitors.

The result leaves United in fifth place in the table having played one more game than third-placed Arsenal and fourth-placed Tottenham, but Solskjaer tried to maintain an upbeat view of his side's top four push.

"We knew that we had to have 15 points to get into that top four position," he declared. "We still have six games to get those 15 points. Now we have to dust ourselves down and get ready to go again."

"They deserve credit because they have pounced on our own mistakes. I felt we played well. We created chances, even with ten men and we have made some bad decisions to concede a goal.

"We played some great football at times and you want to trust your players to get the ball down, but we got punished for taking too many chances.

"Their keeper has made some fantastic saves, so we have done enough to win this game. If you don't take your chances you can get punished and that's what happened.

"I think we played some fantastic stuff, first 20 minutes we should have been two or three up and I'm not exaggerating.

"We didn't pounce on big moments in the game. Scott McTominay played really well tonight, he's been excellent. He gave us a goal threat, energy and legs - very pleased with him.

"There's a couple of mistakes from us. We gave them that first goal, we have to be honest."

Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo saluted his players, as they bounced back from a disappointing defeat at Burnley last Saturday to claim another big Premier League scalp.

"What more can you ask? We know it was very difficult. The extra effort the boys make and they the react to the first goal - I'm really pleased," said Santo, whose side will now get ready for an FA Cup semi-final against Watford this weekend.

"I give credit to United for how they shaped themselves, it was difficult to recover the ball. The way we reacted was amazing.

"Even after the red card it is always difficult against United. We created spaces and had more chances. If there's one thing I can complain about it is being more clinical.

"The preparation starts now for the semi-final - we will rest and prepare for a difficult game. A fantastic challenge for us."

Online Editors

The Throw-In All-Ireland Hurling Final preview: Can Tipp's firepower edge clash with the Cats?

In association with Bord Gáis Energy

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport