Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says the final three games of the Premier League run in will provide a proper test of his players’ mental strength. But he insisted he is confident they will emerge from it with a place in the FA Cup final and a top four finish. A setback against Southampton in which they conceded a 97th-minute equaliser was not enough to take destiny out of their hands.
If they win all their remaining games they will secure Champions League football for next season.
With that in mind Solskjaer has told his squad to trust themselves from now to the end of the season.
“We have to keep on doing what we’ve been doing, trust yourselves, you’re at a club where it always boils down to the last couple of weeks of the season,” he said.
“We’ve done fantastic since we restarted, had a great run, a little bit of a setback is a test for mentalities.”
Solskjaer is sweating on the fitness of both his left back options Luke Shaw and Brandon Williams after they were both injured against Saints.
Williams received a knock to the head and a cut eye and is likely to be missing owing to concussion protocols while Shaw twisted his ankle.
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Solskjaer will give Shaw as much time as possible to prove his fitness ahead of tomorrow’s trip to Crystal Palace.
“Luke has got, well, a swollen ankle, I’ll give him as much time as possible to recover, it was a twisted ankle,
“Brandon cut up his eye. They didn’t train yesterday, they were both swollen and I’ll give them as much time as poss to let the swelling go away.”
United play Chelsea for a place in the FA Cup Final on Sunday but Solskjaer insisted he is not selecting for the Palace game with one eye on Wembley.
But he hinted that there may be some fresh legs coming to cover injuries.
“The team selection for Thursday is based on Thursday not Sunday. Sunday is irrelevant, does not come into my head at all,” he said.
“There were a couple of doubts before the Southampton game but they all reported fit on the day and hopefully we can give them time now.
“There might be one or two fresh legs coming in.
Solskjaer refused to be drawn into the row over Man City’s European reprieve on Monday despite United being a co-signatory to a letter sent to CAS demanding they were not able to compete in next season’s Champions League while their appeal was ongoing.
“I think other people can debate that and want to debate that I don’t think that’s my job, my job is to focus on the next game and do the right things,” he said.
“Financial Fair Play was brought into keep football clubs financially sustainable and that’s important and they give us rules, that’s what we’re focusing on and let other people discuss the rights and wrongs.”
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