‘It’s the way of the game now’: Ole Gunner Solskjaer on Ruben Neves foul complaints as Man United beat Wolves

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 (PA)
(PA)

Last week, Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was complaining about what he perceived to be a lack of protection from the referee throughout the 1-1 draw with Southampton.

Today, speaking after his side’s 1-0 away to Wolves, the Norwegian who took charge of his 100th game at the club, was all smiles as referee Mike Dean’s clemency proved the difference.

In the build-up to Mason Greenwood’s 80th-minute winner, Paul Pogba’s outstretched boot collided Ruben Neves’ right leg. The Portuguese player went down but play went on even after VAR had a look.

“Last week I was complaining because we didn’t get a foul,” Solskjaer told the BBC. “It’s the way of the game now. They want it flowing, they want more lenient refereeing.

“I don’t think it’s a foul, I think two of them go for the ball and it’s a good tackle by Paul [Pogba]. It has to be consistent, but it will take a few weeks to find that correct line. We were told before the game today that the referee would let the game flow. With the crowd, the passion, the game was all about passion in the crowd and on the pitch.”

Mason Greenwood’s proved the winner for Manchester United (Getty Images)
Mason Greenwood’s proved the winner for Manchester United (Getty Images)

United were second best for much of the contest and struggled to gain any control in midfield. But Solskjaer will soon be able to call upon new signing Cristiano Ronaldo. But as telling as his contribution may be, the manager knows he has a special talent in today’s match winner.

“It’s special,” Solskjaer said of Greenwood’s decisive strike. “To get the shot on target from that angle is good, of course the keeper maybe could have saved it but he hit it so quickly. The beauty of him is that he can go outside right foot and inside left foot, so it’s hard for a defender.”

Greenwood is now just the second teenager to score in his team’s opening three games of a Premier League campaign, after Robbie Fowler for Liverpool in 1994-95. And with veteran goal machines Ronaldo and Edinson Cavani to learn from this season, the 19-year-old from Bradford will surely grow even more prolific.

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