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Solskjaer: I won’t panic after UCL collapse


Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said it is not the time “to push the panic button” after exiting the Champions League and his team is still on the right track.

United welcome Manchester City to Old Trafford on Saturday, four days after defeat to RB Leipzig meant Solskjaer’s side would be playing in the Europa League for the remainder of the season.

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The first Manchester derby of the season offers a chance to bounce back immediately and Solskjaer has urged supporters to have faith that he is the right man.

“It’s important not to press the panic button every time; you know in football you can’t win every game,” Solskjaer told a news conference on Friday. “There are games that you lose that will stick and hurt more than others that will have more consequences than others.

“Now we’re facing the reality of not having Champions League for the rest of the season so we need to make sure we move on, get back into Champions League and how we do that is just by improving from last season.”

Defeat in Germany has led some fans to question Solskjaer’s position but he said progress is being made despite an early exit from the Champions League.

“We feel we’re getting better and better and looking more like a Man United team that I want,” he said. “We can see more of the penetration and consistency everyone says we don’t have.

“We’ve won the last four in the league which has become a good run and hopefully that continues.”

Solskjaer will have Anthony Martial available to face City after the France international missed the trip to Leipzig because of injury.

Edinson Cavani was also absent in Germany and the striker is set to undergo a late fitness test ahead of the derby.

“We were disappointed on Tuesday night, it’s natural, we really wanted to go through,” Solskjaer said. “It was a tight group decided by fine margins, you can see that in most games.

“We had a day of recovery on Wednesday and after that the focus has been good. A Manchester derby is probably the best game you can ask for after such a disappointment because it does stick in your system.”



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