Manchester United's Ole Gunnar Solskjaer pleased with rotation picks after late FA Cup win at Norwich

United remain in the hunt for silverware at the end of this season

Karl Matchett
Saturday 27 June 2020 20:48 BST
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Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer acknowledged his team were not at their best in beating Norwich City after extra time in the FA Cup.

But the Norwegian boss insisted being in the next round was all that counts at this stage and pointed to the positive of game time for his fringe players, despite a disjointed performance.

United needed a 118th-minute Harry Maguire goal to see off the Canaries in the quarter-finals at Carrow Road, with the home side playing the entirety of extra time with 10 men.

Solskjaer refrained from being critical at the lack of cohesion in his team, though, with several of them not having featured much since the resumption of action in May.

“That’s football for you,” he said after the game to BBC Sport. “The game was not the greatest spectacle, but I felt we kept the ball ok. We didn’t create enough chances or threaten enough, but you’re delighted you’re in the semi-finals.

“It was a good workout, [we] got minutes into many players and rested quite a few. Maybe [the lack of cohesion was] to be expected, many of these didn’t play since LASK Linz [in the Europa League] before the lockdown.

“The rhythm and tempo wasn’t there but we’re through and happy with that.”

Solskjaer also pointed to his team having been handed tricky draws throughout the FA Cup run so far and had praise for stand-in striker Odion Ighalo, who scored the opening goal of the game.

Odion Ighalo celebrates after putting United in front
Odion Ighalo celebrates after putting United in front (Reuters)

“We’re through and that’s what matters in the cup. We’ve been drawn away every round so we’ve done well to get here. It’s great to have the option to rotate.

“Anthony [Martial] came on and did well, created chances, but Odion firstly gives the chance to rotate and rest Martial and secondly he’s a proven goalscorer as well.

“Today he’s played a part in both goals and he’s great around the dressing room as well.”

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