Matty Longstaff goal to sink Man United leaves Solskjaer sorry and Bruce bubbly

Press Association Sport 08:31 07/10/2019
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Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer apologised to the club’s fans after a 1-0 defeat at Newcastle left them in 12th place in the Premier League.

Disgruntled travelling supporters sang anti-Glazer family chants as Matty Longstaff’s debut goal at St James’ Park left United without an away win in 11 attempts in all competitions.

Manager Solskjaer admitted after the game that they had simply not been good enough.

He said: “We’re unhappy with the results and it’s the results that bring out the mood of everyone, and I’ve got to say sorry to the fans that we’re not winning games.

“But that’s down to that now as well, we have started a rebuild. This is not a similar situation to when I was sat here after Everton last year when I felt people had given up and they don’t give what they have for the shirt.

“These boys give everything they’ve got for the shirt, and we’ll get there again.”

The visitors enjoyed plenty of possession on Tyneside against a Magpies side routed 5-0 at Leicester a week earlier but failed to convert it into meaningful chances, with defender Harry Maguire’s glaring miss on the stroke of half-time as good as it got.

Asked to assess the performance, Solskjaer said: “Very symptomatic of where we are at the moment, disappointing. We don’t create enough chances to deserve to win a game of football – and that’s the short version.

“The first half, I couldn’t see that one coming before the game because it was such a disappointing performance first half.

“The ball, it seemed like we couldn’t control it, it seemed like it was a hot potato and it was bouncing off our feet.

“Second half was better, we dominated more – but you could still see a couple of counter-attacks coming, especially just before the goal as well.”

Newcastle’s Geordie head coach Steve Bruce was thrilled at the response of his players to their humiliation at the King Power Stadium as he enjoyed the first win of his managerial career over the club for which he played for eight-and-a-half years.

He said: “Especially against who the visitors were… It’s been a long time coming, probably too long.

“It’s been a difficult week in particular, but that result gives everybody a lift, and let’s just hope now they all come back from internationals and we can stay a bit injury-free.”

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David De Gea apologises to fans and admits Man Utd have ‘a lot of things to improve’

Press Association Sport 23:45 06/10/2019
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David De Gea says improvements are needed across the board as the goalkeeper endures his “most difficult time” at Manchester United.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men slumped to a 1-0 loss at embattled Newcastle, where 19-year-old Matty Longstaff’s goal on his Premier League debut sent the visitors into a tailspin.

It is now 11 matches in all competitions since Manchester United last tasted victory on the road, with the side entering the international break 12th after managing two wins from their eight league games.

De Gea, who signed a new deal with the club last month, is at a loss about the state of affairs at Old Trafford.

Asked how United can put things right and what is missing, the Spain goalkeeper told Sky Sports: “Everything.

“A lot of things to improve. I don’t know what to say. Just keep trying, keep fighting, keep improving every day.

“It’s a hard moment for us, a difficult moment but we’re United, we need to keep fighting.”

De Gea also admitted this was as tough as he had known it at United since moving to Old Trafford in 2011, saying: “Yes, it probably is the most difficult time since I’ve been here.

“I don’t know (why it is tougher than before). I don’t know what is happening, we cannot score even one goal in two games. It’s difficult to say something, sorry to the fans, we will keep fighting for sure, we will come back, but at the moment we are in a difficult situation.”

Things do not get any easier for United as table-topping Liverpool arrive at Old Trafford after the international break.

De Gea added: “I think we defended quite well, it’s true that they had good chances to score but, come on, we concede a goal from a corner for us, and that cannot happen. It’s not acceptable.

“Not just this game, the whole season has been not good, so keep going, keep fighting, and let’s see what happens in the next games.”

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Chelsea in a nice position but nowhere near the finished article, says Frank Lampard

Press Association Sport 21:29 06/10/2019
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Frank Lampard believes Chelsea can challenge at the top of the Premier League this season, but only if they keep up the work-rate and togetherness they currently have.

The Blues made it four consecutive wins in all competitions with a 4-1 victory over Southampton at St Mary’s after goals from Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount, N’Golo Kante and Michy Batshuayi.

Chelsea have 14 points and are two off second-placed Manchester City – after the champions’ shock home defeat to Wolves – but trail Liverpool by 10 after eight fixtures this term.

Lampard said: “I think we are a few points short of where we should be, based on our performances and that is not bad luck, just me being self-critical because there are games where we should have gained more points from so that is on us, but I’m pretty happy.

“I am happy we are in and around the (top) group. Obviously Liverpool are out on their own at the minute, but at this early stage we are in a nice position.

“This should give us determination to go away (for international duty) and come back in the same vein because the minute you relax in this league it can all change very quickly.

“The reason we are playing well is because of how hard we are working and how together we are. If we can keep that going, then we will be challenging right up there I hope.”

Abraham opened the scoring on the south coast with an excellent lob over Angus Gunn after racing on to Callum Hudson-Odoi’s fine through ball in the 17th minute.

Portsmouth-born Mount doubled their advantage seven minutes later, curling home before cupping his ears to the Southampton supporters.

But Danny Ings pulled one back, after Yan Valery dribbled beyond Fikayo Tomori, and Lampard focused on the areas where Chelsea can improve.

“A lot of weeks I will say the boys at the back have been brilliant and they have recently, but we can’t afford to give little moments,” he said.

“That is a pointer for all of us that we are not there, we are nowhere near the finished article. The benchmark is Liverpool and City and how they play, so we need to cut out those little bits.”

Kante’s deflected effort put the Londoners 3-1 ahead at half-time and substitute Batshuayi drilled through Gunn’s legs with a minute left – after Christian Pulisic’s excellent through ball – to conclude the scoring.

A negative for Chelsea was the away fans chanting a song about Lampard which referred to West Ham as ‘pikeys’ and he addressed the issue.

“It does go on. I watched a game on TV (on Saturday) where I heard similar stuff from other clubs and none of us want it. I have said it before here,” the Blues manager said.

“I will always back the Chelsea fans in how they support us, but with that we don’t want them to chant stuff which is discriminatory to anybody and anyone. We all need to look at it. It is a wider problem than just Chelsea, but it shouldn’t stop us talking about it.”

Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhuttl cut a frustrated figure afterwards, bemoaning the poor defending of his team.

He added: “This game today was a little bit too easy for the opponent. In the other games we didn’t give so much chances away, but today it was too easy for them.

“OK we took a bit of a risk with a 4-3-3 and then it’s important you have a good start, we had the first chance, but to take the lead at home, it never happens this season so far and that would absolutely help us.

“In total it is not enough at the moment and this is why we will have two intense weeks in front of us.”

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