Manchester United started off their pre-season preparations on a bright note by defeating Wayne Rooney’s Derby County 2-1. With a majority of the senior players on summer break, the United youngsters secured a comfortable win against the Championship side.
Tahith Chong opened the scoring for United in the 18th minute, and Facundo Pellistri scored his first for the club in the 59th minute. Though Derby pulled one back through Colin Kazim-Richards in the 70th minute, United comfortably negated their opponents to win the game.
Speaking after the game United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer admitted he would try to get more minutes for the experienced players. Speaking to MUTV he said “It was the first game for us, and it takes a little bit of time to get into that match mode. But we’ve won the game and it’s good for these kids to feel that they’ve won the game.”
“There’ll be more [minutes] for some of the most experienced ones, of course. There’ll probably be less and less for the kids – that’s just the way it goes. We have to start better than last season. We didn’t get off to a decent start at all and now it’s first one under the belt.”
“I think the Premier League is more competitive [than it used to be]. We had [when I was a player] maybe one competitor every season so, of course, the first six or seven games, it’s very important to stay there. You don’t win the league in the first six or seven games, but you can lose the chance of winning the league.”
Jesse Lingard, who spent the second half of last season on loan at West Ham was involved in United’s win against Derby. Having been a vital cog in West Ham’s push for European place finish last season, it’s been rumoured Lingard might make a permanent move to the London club. However, Solskjaer revealed Lingard is still in his plans for the next season. He added “Jesse has come back, he’s been bright and he wants to fight for his place.”
“There’s nothing better than seeing players willing to fight for their place. Of course, what he did towards the end of the season, that is the true Jesse. That’s what we know he is capable of. I think we saw towards the end [of our own season] that we lacked maybe some options at times.”
Source: Manchester United