Manchester United XI vs Newcastle
A Bruno Fernandes brace and further goals from Marcus Rashford and Daniel James secured a thumping 4-0 win for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side in their round of 32 first-leg tie against Real Sociedad, which was played in Turin on Thursday.
Progress in that competition is surely secured bar an extraordinary turnaround from the Basque outfit, so United can likely afford to switch things up personnel wise in Thursday’s second leg and instead channel their focus into trying to narrow the now 10-point gap to dominant Premier League leaders Manchester City (which could soon become 13, with Pep Guardiola’s side facing Arsenal before United take the field this weekend).
The visit of Newcastle seems an ideal chance to get back to winning ways in the top-flight after successive draws against Everton and West Brom, though United are set to be without Paul Pogba for the rest of February with the thigh injury he sustained in that thrilling 3-3 tie with the Toffees.
Gunnar Solskjaer warning
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has issued a rallying cry to his Manchester United squad, calling for his players to prove that they “want it more” than their opponents.
United are due to welcome Newcastle to Old Trafford on Sunday night as they continue to try and chase down arch-rivals Manchester City at the top of the table.
The Red Devils have fallen 10 points behind City after a run of just one win from their last five games and Solskjaer has warned that they cannot afford to take any teams lightly heading into the business end of the season.
What was said?
“Every game in the Premier League is difficult. You’ve got to earn the right. You’ve got to do it by your quality but first of all the attitude,” the Norwegian told United’s official website.
“Run more than them, want it more than them and we’ve got players who have got the quality, so hopefully we can take the chances.” full story
Fabrizio Romano issues update on Man United’s pursuit of La Liga icon
Manchester United not in contact with agent of Sergio Ramos, claims Fabrizio Romano
Reputed journalist and transfer guru Fabrizio Romano has provided an update on the speculations linking Manchester United with a summer move for Real Madrid captain and icon Sergio Ramos.
The veteran Spanish defender is out of contract at the end of the season, sparking all sorts of speculations on his future. Manchester United are said to be one of the clubs keen on signing the 35-year-old.
In fact, reports last week claimed that Ramos’ agent was due to travel to England to hold talks with Manchester United over the possibility of a summer transfer once his contract runs out.
Romano, however, has downplayed those claims, insisting that there has been no contact whatsoever between Manchester United and Ramos’ camp as things stand.
One of the greatest ever defenders of the modern era, Ramos has been playing at the highest level for over fifteen years now and has won almost everything there is for the taking.
Even though he is well into his thirties, the centre-back remains a quality operator. And add to that his leadership, experience and the winning mentality that he would bring to the table would make him a valuable member of the team, even if it is for a short term.