Manchester United take the short trip to Merseyside in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon full of confidence, following their hard-fought win at Turf Moor. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer addressed the media’s questions ahead of the biggest game of their season so far.
The mentality and togetherness of the players
Solskjaer held his press match press conference on Saturday, excited ahead of the trip to Liverpool. He faced the media on his group of players going into the pulsating tie.
“It’s a great spirit, I think we have gained some valuable players, with valuable experience. A few of the signings we have made, I think we’ve become stronger mentally, physically and more robust on both parts. They are all good human beings and good professionals which helps the group.”
Position in the league table
The United manager knows three points would mean a great deal to the squad, but the incentive will come with a big challenge on Sunday.
“Being of course where we are in the league that just gives us more confidence and it’s a sign or an indication of where we are at. The game against the champions, they’ve got an amazing record at Anfield in the league and haven’t lost for many years. It’s a great test for us can we go there and cause an upset.
“I don’t think about where we are going to end up at the moment. You always want to improve, you always want to be better, you have ambitions of winning every game, and I’m glad the players do think that way and that means we’re doing something right here at the club. The mentality is right, they want to do it, and for us it’s a chance now to test ourselves where we are really at, as Liverpool at Anfield is one of the great challenges," Solskjaer said.
Team News and on Liverpool’s form
He gave an update on injuries and availability and spoke about Liverpool as an outfit on what to expect.
“Well, I think we have as many injuries as them, that’s just how football is, you get injuries and that’s part and parcel of the game. The ones that are certainly out are Brandon Williams and Phil Jones, they are the two that definitely cannot make the game. For us as I said form goes out the window when you play your rivals, but our form gives us confidence, so we are confident going into the game.
“But we are the challengers, they are the champions, they’ve earned the right to be the champions and we’re challengers and hunters and you want something they’ve had and they have. So, our mentality will be to work hard, to be humble, and do our best to see what we can get out of the game. We go there with the knowledge that we have to play to our best and work harder than ever to get a result, that’s what you do against the best teams.
“If you look at the last few seasons it would be an upset and it would be a shock. I think our position at the moment is the product of all our hard work we have done on the training ground and what the players are putting down every single day. We probably deserve to be where we are at, at the moment, but I don’t think many would have thought anything but another word for it than an upset, if we go back six weeks, if we beat Liverpool at Anfield. But we’re looking forward to the game and hopefully we can cause an upset.”
“We know we can beat anyone, anywhere on any given day, so to be able to go into a game like this feeling that if we play to our best we can win is a good feeling. But we know we have to perform to our best, we don’t really think consequences after that. We just think about the performance because as I said many times it’s a test and reality check where we are really at. We have won many tight games, scored a few goals in injury time, showed that mentality. We’ve not really set the world alight too many times. To win away at Anfield you really need to be at your best level.”