Man Utd: Solskjaer urges team to use Europa pain to rebuild
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Manchester United will still give Ole Gunnar Solskjaer a new contract despite their Europa League final defeat to Villarreal on Wednesday, according to reports. The Norwegian’s side went into the match looking to win a first trophy of his tenure. But that didn’t happen, with Unai Emery’s team reigning supreme instead.
Manchester United fell behind in the final, with Gerard Moreno getting the better of Victor Lindelof to open the scoring.
They then levelled through Edinson Cavani, who was able to force extra time.
But United lost on penalties, with David De Gea fluffing his lines after the two teams had scored 21 penalties between them.
It was a chastening night for Solskjaer, with some fans calling on the Norwegian to go in the aftermath of the crushing result.
Yet the Mirror say the 48-year-old is primed to sign a new contract with the club instead, despite the chastening manner of the defeat in Gdansk.
It’s claimed the deal will be signed ‘in the coming weeks’, with the Glazers confident he’s the right man to lead the team going forward.
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And it’s also said the United manager would like three fresh faces, at least, to improve his squad further.
He still wants a new striker, even though the club have managed to convince Cavani to stay in English football for another 12 months.
Erling Haaland remains a transfer target, with the Norway international scoring 40 goals across all competitions for Borussia Dortmund this term.
And Harry Kane is also being eyed, even though he seems likelier to leave Tottenham for Manchester City instead.
Kane could even end up staying at Tottenham if Mauricio Pochettino returns, with the Argentine currently in talks over a possible return from Paris Saint-Germain.
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United want a right winger, too, with Jadon Sancho currently their priority.
And Solskjaer is also hoping the Glazers will shell out for another centre-back as well amid longstanding interest in Real Madrid centre-back Raphael Varane.
The problem is, however, the Glazers have been stingy with their transfer funds whenever the club have secured Champions League qualification.
So something will need to change if United are to become the same successful outfit they were during Sir Alex Ferguson’s spell in charge.
Speaking after the defeat on Wednesday, Solskjaer admitted players within the dressing room were ‘disappointed’ with the result.
“It’s quiet, a disappointed dressing room. That’s football for you,” he said.
“Sometimes it’s decided on one kick – and that’s the difference between winning and losing.
“We have to learn from that one, not savour this feeling but taste this feeling and make sure we don’t get it again.
“We didn’t turn up. We didn’t play as well as we know we can. We started alright and they got the goal, their only shot on target. We were disappointed to concede a goal on a set play.
“We pushed, we pressed, we got a goal. After we scored we didn’t control the game or dominate as we wanted.
“They made it hard for us, they closed spaces. We had the majority of possession. They defended well. We didn’t create enough big chances.
“Now is not the time to point the finger at what I’d have done differently. But when you come out without the trophy you haven’t done everything right.
“We’re getting closer and closer and better. We were one kick away from a trophy and a good night.
“We have to have the desire to come back next year and improve.
“The only way to get the margins your side is to work harder and better.”
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