Man Utd boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer agrees with Mason Greenwood after Real Sociedad win
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Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has agreed with Mason Greenwood’s assertion that he’s a future centre-forward. The England international has spent the majority of his Old Trafford career shunted out wide. However, he impressed playing down the middle as the Red Devils beat Real Sociedad 4-0 in the first leg of their Europa League round of 16 clash on Thursday night.
United were at their brilliant best against Sociedad, turning on the style to give themselves a healthy first leg lead.
Bruno Fernandes, inevitably, was the star of the show with the Portugal international scoring twice to take his goal tally up to 21 for the season.
And then, in the second half, Marcus Rashford and Daniel James struck to ensure United head back to England with a huge lead to their name.
Before the contest, which was played at the Allianz Stadium in Italy instead of Spain because of the coronavirus crisis, Greenwood gave an interview to BT Sport.
And while he did admit he was unsure where his best role was, the 19-year-old claimed he’d like to play as a striker in the future.
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“I don’t really know to be honest,” he told Rio Ferdinand, who won the lot during his own spell at the Theatre of Dreams.
“I’m happy to play on the right, I’m happy to play on the left I’m happy to play as a centre-forward.
“I’m not really sure to be honest. I always wanted to be a striker but I’ve also been a winger in the youth team and in the academy.
“I would like to play up front eventually, once I’m older and fill out a bit more, get a bit bigger and stronger because the centre-halves are always big and strong at the back.
“It’s a place I want to play, I do want to play centre-forward eventually, but I’m happy on the right and it’s a good position to work from really.”
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And Solskjaer, speaking after the Sociedad win, insisted he also thought the teenager would become a No 9 in the future.
“Today was a decision we made [to play Mason up front] because, with Marcus and Dan, we felt the spaces behind the full-backs tonight were going to be important,” he said.
“We had Mason in the middle, dropping off and getting on the ball, and he’ll keep playing sometimes up front and sometimes wide.
“We’ll find his position later on but we probably need a year or two before he’s a full-grown number nine.”
Solskjaer also thinks United have learned from their time in the Europa League last term.
The Red Devils made the semi-finals before losing 2-1 to Sevilla, in a result that ensured their wait for a trophy go on.
And he said: “We didn’t get anything back from last season’s Europa League run, that’s for sure.
“We can talk about being in the semi-final and, in the end, we got nothing out of that so maybe sometimes you could look at it not being worth it.
“But I think the experience from last season has helped this team, these boys, and we have got to learn from experiences on the job.
“That’s the only way of learning from your mistakes to correct them.
“I’ve got to say the semi-final defeat last season is still in the back of our heads. Of course, it hurts. We played a very good Sevilla team and felt we should have gone all the way.”
Up next for United is Newcastle.
And Solskjaer has hinted that, with the games coming thick and fast, he’ll rotate his side to ensure they’re fresh.
“Of course, it’s such a tight schedule and, as you saw today, we rotated quite a bit and made some changes after about an hour,” said the 47-year-old.
“It’s good for minutes and for form and for everyone.
|We’ve got to make changes, keep freshening up and then Sunday already, here we go again.”
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