football

Manchester United's Mason Greenwood urged to 'kick on' after ending drought


Ole Gunnar Solskjær has urged Mason Greenwood to “kick on” following his goal against Liverpool after the Manchester United forward failed to do so when last scoring two months ago.

The 19-year-old’s equaliser in Sunday’s 3-2 FA Cup win over the champions was only a fourth of the campaign. This followed a standout contribution of 17 last season, the joint-highest ever by a United teenager.

Greenwood was sent home by England from Iceland in September along with Manchester City’s Phil Foden after they invited two women to the team hotel, in breach of Covid rules. He has also suffered from illness in a season yet to be as impressive as the previous one.

Solskjær was asked whether Sunday’s strike – a first since the 3-1 win at West Ham on 5 December – might fire up Greenwood again. “We think Mason is going to be very important in second half of the season but it’s not just going happen by itself,” the manager said. “He scored against West Ham a while back as well and was expected to kick on.

“He’s taken steps, he’s grown, he’s more mature and he’s been training with Edinson Cavani for half a season, he’s learning good habits, and whoever doesn’t learn from players like him, or Bruno [Fernandes] or [any of] the players we’ve brought in that’s a pity. I’m very confident that Mason will chip in good performances and with goals and assists.”

Marcus Rashford is available for Sheffield United’s visit on Wednesday after he suffered a knee injury against Liverpool. “He trained this morning – he tweaked his knee a little bit but trained fully,” Solskjær said.

The Norwegian is yet to open talks regarding fresh terms to continue as manager, his contract expiring in summer 2022. “We haven’t had any discussions yet; for me just keep on doing my job as well as I can,” he said.

Jesse Lingard and Brandon Williams may leave in the transfer window, though the latter would almost certainly do so on loan. Solskjær said. “There have been many clubs interested in our players, so let’s see what happens. It’s important to take our wishes and our plans into consideration but also the players of course because they are Man United people and players through and through,” said the manager.

The 19-year-old winger Facundo Pellistri may also leave on a temporary basis.



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