Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has called on his big-game players to step up to the challenge ahead of Manchester United’s Europa League semi-final clash against Sevilla.
The game, being played in Cologne, is United’s third semi-final of the season and Solskjaer is hoping his team can do what they have failed to do on the two previous occasions, against Manchester City and Chelsea, and reach the final, which is being held on August 21 at the RheinEnergieStadion.
“You know that, when you come to a semi-final, you’re playing against good teams, big teams with quality, it’s time to step up for big players in big-game moments,” Solskjaer said.
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“You have to have 100 per cent focus, any little moment can win, lose or change the game and we’ve learnt it’s very painful to lose a semi-final.”
One of those big-game players who can help drag United to their first final of the season is Bruno Fernandes.
The Portuguese scored the decisive penalty in the quarter-final victory over FC Copenhagen and he spoke about the support he has been given since arriving in the January transfer window.
“When a club pay €55 million (£47m/$65m) for a player, you have confidence from the club, of course from all the conversations I had with the coach and my team-mates,” Fernandes said.betpas önerdiğimiz canlı bahis oynama sitesidir. betpas409 ise yeni giriş adresidir.
“The coach, all the time, speaks to me to do my game and what I already did in Sporting to have the same confidence, try the same things, improve. When you have that voice to do your own thing it’s easy for you.”
Solskjaer will be hoping his team start with that confidence Fernandes speaks of after they were slow to get out of the blocks against Copenhagen in the quarter-finals.
“We’ve had a few good days now preparing and recovering,” said Solskjaer. “It’s not very often we have six days between games, so we’re ready, we are physically, definitely ready, mentally the boys will be ready.
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“It’s a semi-final, everyone will want to take part and join in and I just want them to enjoy it. For me, I’m looking forward to it.
“We’ve had two semis this season, and we’re happy with going as far as we have but we want to go one step further.
“I think in any game it’s important to start well. We talk about it, we prepare for a good start against good teams and if you start on the back foot, don’t get the first touches and the first goal, it’s going to be difficult. We’re playing a team full of quality and if you don’t get touches it will be hard.”
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