Ole Gunnar Solskjaer tells Manchester United to go all out on the attack against PSG

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has put the smile back on the face of Manchester United since he took over from Jose Mourinho. (AFP)
Updated 05 March 2019

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer tells Manchester United to go all out on the attack against PSG

  • United 2-0 down to French champions after first leg at Old Trafford.
  • Interim boss Solskjaer would 'rather win 4-2 than simply try for a 2-0.'

LONDON: Manchester United will not sit back and hope for an edge-of-the-seat 2-0 win over Paris Saint-Germain, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has promised ahead of their must-win clash in the French capital tonight. 

United lost the first-leg at Old Trafford 2-0 three weeks ago to leave them staring at an early exit from the Champions League. They know a 2-0 win will take the tie into extra-time at the Parc des Princes, but rather than hope the attack does its job and the defence keeps a cleansheet, the interim coach said he wants his team to
attack from the start. 

“We can’t write games off, we’ve been fantastic away from home,” Solskjaer said. “We’re not going to go out without giving a fight.

“We’re going to go out there and enjoy the game. We know it’s a difficult place to come and they played really well at Old Trafford, so it’s a great challenge for our players to go out there and show what they can do.

“We would rather win 4-2 than try to get a 2-0. We’ve got to get to half-time better off than we are now. If you can get to 1-0 at half-time then anything can happen in the second half.”

Such has been Solskjaer’s effect on the side that it would take a fool or a PSG fan to rule out an improbable come-from-behind win for the England giants. The Norwegian has lifted the Reds into the top four of the Premier League and is hot favorite to get the job permanently. He has imbued his side with a “never say die” attitude, with Ashley Young convinced United can shock the French champions. 

“We know what we’re capable of,” Young said.

“Obviously it’s going to be tough. It’s not going to be easy. I’ve got every faith if we defend well and if we create chances,” he added.


Spain considers playing Super Cup in Saudi Arabia

Updated 24 April 2019

Spain considers playing Super Cup in Saudi Arabia

  • Proposal will be made at the federation’s general assembly next week

MADRID: The Spanish soccer federation is looking into the possibility of playing the Spanish Super Cup in Saudi Arabia beginning next year.

Federation President Luis Rubiales said Wednesday playing in the Middle East is one of the options being considered for the tournament, as well as a “final four” format with the top finishers in the Spanish league and the Copa del Rey.

The competition has been played in a one-game final between the champions at the beginning of the season. The idea is to play the new Super Cup in January.

The proposal will be made during the federation’s general assembly next week.

Rubiales did not confirm reports the deal will be worth €30 million ($33 million) a year for six seasons, saying “it will be difficult” to reach that value.

The federation president, one of the main critics of the Spanish league’s idea to play a regular-season match in the US, said the decision would take into consideration the players’ health, noting that playing in Saudi Arabia would not affect them as much as if the game was played in the US or Asia, where travel time and time differences were greater. Last year’s final, won by Barcelona against Sevilla, was played in Tangier, Morocco.

This year’s Italian Super Cup was played in Saudi Arabia as part of a multi-year deal worth more than €20 million ($22 million).  The Spanish players’ association, which complained about the Spanish league’s attempt to play in the US, did not oppose the idea of playing in Saudi Arabia.

“We weren’t against playing in the United States, what we wanted at the time was to be consulted about the idea and to give our opinion,” association president David Aganzo said Wednesday at an event organized by Europa Press. “If the proposal for the Super Cup is good for the players, we won’t have a problem with it.”

The Spanish league had to scrap the game in Florida after Barcelona, which would have faced Girona, backed down because of the lack of consensus among the parties involved. The league said it will try playing abroad again next season.

There is also a plan by the federation to reduce the number of games in the Copa del Rey to help clear up the calendar and keep teams from playing too many matches. The competition would include single elimination matches in some rounds, instead of a two-leg series. The proposal is also expected to be presented in next week’s general assembly.

“The clubs and the players want less official matches in the calendar,” Rubiales said.