Manchester United losing 2-0 to PSG at Old Trafford seems to have cruelly hushed a lot of the chants that claimed Ole Gunnar Solskjaer would take the side back to the top.
Of course, the defeat, when viewed as the lone one in 12 brilliant games, shouldn’t be assessed too cruelly. In fact, considering that the tie was all but assured to go PSG’s way when Jose Mourinho was in charge, the confidence that was brimming prior to Tuesday is a massive positive.
At the same time, under the Norwegian, United seemed to return to the style of football where defeat wasn’t to be accepted and self-pity was discouraged.
The gaffer stressed as much in his post-match press conference, stating: “Don’t feel sorry for yourself. This is something you’ve got to learn from. This is a level up from what we’re used to. They were experienced, they bought some fouls – things like this, this is just part of their learning as players.”
He had specific advice for his younger players: “Many of our players are very young. It’s the first time Jesse and Marcus will play a proper Champions League game at Old Trafford. So, learn from that. You can’t feel sorry for yourself.”
In trademark Sir Alex Ferguson fashion, the Norwegian also chose not to dwell too long on the defeat, instead focusing on the big games that await them next.
“We have to bounce back. At this club you have to bounce back. In a tournament like the Champions League, it’s going to be difficult whoever you play against but our bread and butter is the league and we’ve got the FA Cup against Chelsea as well.
“We have to look forward. We’ve got Chelsea and Liverpool in the next two games. Whoever is feeling sorry for themselves they will not play, probably, against Chelsea.”