Paul Pogba judges Man Utd progress under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer after Man City defeat
Man Utd v Man City: Match in pictures
Paul Pogba insists Manchester United have made significant progress under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in the wake of their 2-0 Carabao Cup defeat to Manchester City on Wednesday night. Goals from John Stones and Fernandinho propelled Pep Guardiola’s side to the final of the competition for the fourth year on the trot. And they’ll now lock horns with Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham at Wembley in April.
United went into the match against City looking to continue their improvement in form.
But the Red Devils were played off the pitch by Guardiola’s side, who were superior throughout the contest.
United had far less of the ball, less shots on target, managed less passes and had a lower pass accuracy from the match at Old Trafford.
But Pogba, speaking to MUTV after the game, has insisted they’re getting better under Solskjaer despite a fourth straight semi-final defeat.
“You know, we are improving,” he said.
“It was both ways, 50/50, the team hit the post but otherwise the chances weren’t really clear.
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“Last year they were obviously more dominant and they dominated us. Today that wasn’t the case so obviously we are improving.
“We are improving in the league and, even though we lost in the semi-final, we are still going far and that is what we want.
“But now it is about details. It is good to improve but we have to go to the next step now, all of us.”
Pogba is relishing the football schedule ahead, with United next in action against Watford in the FA Cup on Saturday night.
“That is why you play,” said the 2018 World Cup winner. “Football and playing for Man United is not easy, it will never be easy.
“But it makes the victory prettier and more beautiful when we get through a tough time, then we get through this.
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“It is beautiful and you get the emotion. That is all we want.
“That is what the fan wants, that is what the team wants, everyone wants this. So the club is built on winning and big things, so that is all we want to get – the big stuff.”
Solskjaer, too, insisted that United have made significant strides under his tutelage – and that the evidence is clear to see.
“We played against a very good Man City team, definitely,” he said.
“They played well. And when they play well, you have to play very well to beat them, that’s just the reality of where we’re at. We’re just lacking that little bit.
“I think when you lose a semi-final and when you lose against an opponent, you think they deserved it.
“But we’re getting closer. This is a much better version of Man United than a year ago, in those semis. So that’s positive but it’s not enough.”
Meanwhile, former United star Dion Dublin hit out at Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial in the aftermath of the defeat.
“Manchester City were the better side,” he said. “They played the better football, they created the better chances.
“They looked more in sync with each other, the final third football was better and it was 80% City, 20% Manchester United.
“United just didn’t do enough in the final and Marcus Rashford was wasted down the right-hand side and Anthony Martial should have done more.”
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