My darkest day as Man Utd manager – Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer called Manchester United’s 5-0 thrashing by Liverpool his “darkest day” as manager of the club, but with his job under pressure, remained adamant his squad are close to success.

It has been a dismal recent run of results in the Premier League for United, with Sunday’s defeat by one of their biggest rivals leaving them winless in four top-flight matches.

It did not take long for Liverpool to take a 2-0 lead, doubling that before half-time with two Mohamed Salah goals. The forward completed his hat-trick early in the second half, before Paul Pogba compounded Man Utd’s misery with a straight red card 15 minutes after coming on as a half-time substitute.

The defeat once again raises questions over United’s defensive capabilities, and whether their expensive talent can gel together as a squad.

Speaking to Sky Sports after the game, Solskjaer said: “It’s not easy to say something, apart from it’s the darkest day I’ve had leading these players.

“We weren’t good enough individually or as a team. You can’t give a team like Liverpool those chances and unfortunately, we did.

“The whole performance wasn’t good enough, that’s for sure. We have created openings, they have had chances, they have been clinical and we did not take our chances early on. Then the third goal is the one that decided the game.

“It’s mine [responsibly for the loss] – that’s it. The coaching staff are brilliant and I choose the way we approach the game and today, we weren’t clinical enough going forward. There were spaces for both teams and when you give good players spaces, they score.

“You can look back at last season when we lost 6-1 to Spurs – this is miles worse. The opposition as well, that makes it miles worse for me as a Manchester lad and we have to get over this as quick as we can and move on.”

Sunday’s 5-0 loss was Man Utd’s third-largest home defeat in the Premier League and dramatically increases the pressure on Solskjaer’s tenure as United manager.

When asked if he was still the right man to lead the team, he replied: “We’ve come too far as a group and we’re too close to give up now

“I’ve heard nothing else [about a potential departure], and I’m still thinking about tomorrow’s work, of course. We’re all low. I can’t say now that I’ve felt any worse than this. This is the lowest I’ve been. But as I’ve said, I accept the responsibility, and that is mine today. It’s mine going forward.

“I do believe in myself, I do believe that I am getting close to what I want with the club, I think what we’ve done, what I’ve seen, the development, of course, the results lately haven’t been good enough. But I’ve got to keep strong and I do believe in what we’ve been doing, the coaching staff and the players.”

Solskjaer now faces the huge task of picking up his squad and staff ahead of their trip to Tottenham next weekend.

“The only way I know how to approach life is to wake up tomorrow morning, look forward, of course evaluate what has gone on and do my very, very best and be determined to come through difficult times,” he said.

“This is the worst feeling, you feel rock bottom, after the feeling we have had that we are getting to where we want to be has been there, but the last few weeks we have hit a brick wall. Results have not come, the performances have not come, and we have conceded too many easy goals. That’s a concern.

“But the time is now. Manchester United have had tough difficult times before and have always bounced back, and we have taken on challenges.

“Last season, we were second, this season we have started badly. We have hit a brick wall. You have got to get through that one. You have got to start building performances, results, and clean sheets and see where that takes us.”

SourceSkySports

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