A long list of injuries sustained in recent games has left Manchester United heavily undermanned. Solskjaer, who has a staggering number of 10 players unavailable for the Crystal Palace game, indicated earlier that he may bring in some young reserve team players for the mid-week game. Moreover, the manager also gave indication of Fred starting against Crystal Palace.
Among the lot, Nemanja Matic and Ander Herrera’s absence will leave United’s Norwegian boss with some serious selection crisis.
The midfield duo, alongside Paul Pogba, had been ever-present in United’s midfield since Solskjaer took over. The excellent performances of the 3 midfielders have kept the likes of McTominay and Pereira out of the playing XI.
One player who seems to have lost the manager’s trust completely is the summer signing, Fred. The Brazilian has only made 7 starts all season, only one of them coming under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
However, the unavailability of Matic and Herrera coupled with the congested fixture may force Solskjaer to give Fred some game time.
The Manchester United boss hinted that Fred may get his 8th start of the season on Wednesday against Crystal Palace.
"I am sure that when given the chance and a run in the team Fred will grab the opportunity."
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) February 27, 2019
Speaking to ESPN, he said,
“(Fred needs to) play well when he gets the chance, keep training and keep working,” Solskjaer said. “We have had a midfield three of Herrera, (Paul) Pogba and Matic and they have played really well together.”
“I’m sure that Fred when he gets the chance, he will grab the opportunity — maybe against Palace.”
The ex-Shakhtar Donetsk man will certainly get chances to impress his manager in the coming weeks, and he must grab the opportunity with both hands if he wants to rejuvenate his Manchester United career.
Several players have already flourished under Solskjaer’s management; and the likes of Romelu Lukaku, Alexis Sanchez, and Fred must do the same now. With key players out injured, United need these men to step up to the occasion and help the club secure Champions League qualification.
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United dropped to fifth place after their 0-0 draw with Liverpool last weekend. With games against Chelsea and Manchester City yet to come and injuries looming, a 4th place finish will become extremely difficult for the Manchester-based club.
The club’s boss has kept a positive attitude, though.
“It’ll be exciting,” Solskjaer said. “There will be so many games that matter in the end, because I don’t think there’ll be many points in it between four, five and six.”
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