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Three things Ole Gunnar Solskjaer got wrong in Man United’s defeat by West Ham

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Manuel Lanzini’s early goal avenged West Ham United’s defeat to Manchester United, as The Hammers knocked the Premier League title contenders out of the Carabao Cup with a 1-0 win at Old Trafford.

The Argentine’s 10th minute sweeping finish from Ryan Fredericks’ excellent cut-back was enough to secure progression into the next round over Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.

The intensity, bite, and directness United displayed when they fell behind to the Clarets at the London Stadium was not replicated under the lights Old Trafford.

21 changes were made between the two managers, with West Ham’s Jarrod Bowen being the only player to start both last weekend’s contest and the League Cup tie.

United improved in the second half and forced goalkeeper Alphonse Areola into several saves, but the breakthrough did not happen, and West Ham hung on to progress to the next round.

According to Dailystar Sport below are three things Solskjaer got wrong against the Hammers.

Midfield partnership selection

Solskjaer also deployed the Dutchman alongside Matic in the 2-1 defeat to Young Boys in the Champions League, so it was a surprise the Norwegian opted for the two alongside each other again.

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It started terribly, with van de Beek giving the ball away in the build-up to Lanzini’s goal.

The former Ajax man just does not look comfortable sitting in front of the back four, with the 24-year-old often getting stranded in the middle.

When Solskjaer’s side decided to spend £40million on the Dutchman, most of his appearances for Ajax came as an No.8 or a No.10 midfielder.

But, Solskjaer is persisting with him as part of a defensive midfield pivot – whether he continues to deploy him in front of the back four, if at all, remains to be seen.

Van de Beek did improve in the second half where he looked to be playing in a more advanced position.

He lofted a perfect pass for Greenwood to latch on to, but the youngster could not get the purchase on his effort to beat Alphonse Areola in the West Ham goal.

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The back four

Alex Telles made his first appearance of the season after a long absence, and he certainly looked like he had not played a match since July.

The Brazilian was nut-megged by Fredericks, who proceeded to cut the ball back for Lanzini to sweep home and give the Hammers the lead.

It was a poor moment for the experienced 28-year-old who really should not have made life so easy for Fredericks.

Diogo Dalot put in some very promising crosses, but he seemed to struggle with the overlapping runs of West Ham’s Arthur Masuaku.

Victor Lindelof and Eric Bailly also looked lost in West Ham’s opener as they could not decide whether to track the on-rushing Jarrod Bowen or hold their ground to try and block the cross.

However, Telles certainly did not do the central defenders any favours, and his first-half mistake was costly to United.

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A complete overhaul

Both managers effectively overhauled their side due to the quick turnaround, but Solskjaer’s changes did not appear to work as well as Moyes’

While the Hammers also fielded a completely different starting eleven, every player was played in their natural position except for Bowen who is naturally a winger rather than a forward.

Another defensive midfielder or a ball player was desperately needed for United as West Ham cut through their midfield like butter.

Jadon Sancho did need a start with the new signing yet to open his goalscoring or assist account with the Red Devils, since arriving from Borussia Dortmund for £71m.

But United had Mason Greenwood on the bench, who has started brilliantly but has failed to score in his last two matches.

Solskjaer’ said he wants to manage the minutes of his key players, but he desperately needed some of them on the pitch against the Hammers.

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Man United facing two-way transfer problems as Erik ten Hag looks to offload six stars

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Manchester United are focused on trying to bring in at least three new signings before deadline day to halt a season already mired in crisis.

But offloading existing players has become just as problematic for United as persuading new names to join Erik ten Hag’s abject side, which currently sits rock-bottom of the Premier League.

United want to get rid of at least six players – Eric Bailly, Phil Jones, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Axel Tuanzebe, James Garner and Brandon Williams – before deadline day in a fortnight’s time.

But so far there have been no takers for United’s cast-offs, with many on such exorbitant wages or simply not considered good enough for other clubs to decide to take them on.

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Although United managed to sell Andreas Pereira to Fulham for £8.5million and send Alex Telles out on loan to Sevilla for the season, shifting other players to raise funds is proving tricky.

Bailly, who failed to even make the nine-man bench for ten Hag’s first two United games, has been told he can leave, but no club has so far made a firm move for the 28-year-old defender.

West Ham, Marseille and Monaco have all expressed interest in the Ivory Coast international, but with two years left on a deal worth £100,000-a-week, Bailly’s wages are proving a stumbling block.

Those clubs interested in Bailly want to take him on loan, with United continuing to pay a significant chunk of his wages. It is a similar story with most of the players United want to jettison.

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United, in contrast, want a permanent sale, to raise revenue to reinvest in the players ten Hag needs to bolster his squad after beginning his tenure with defeats to Brighton and Brentford.

Bailly’s situation is indicative of the lack of effective leadership at United, which has seen the club hand lucrative, long-term contracts to players who have barely featured in recent seasons.

In the case of Bailly, he signed a contract extension in April 2021, keeping him at United until 2023, with the option for a further year. Yet since signing that new deal, Bailly has made just eight Premier League appearances and has not made a competitive appearance for United since December last year.

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It is a familiar story with Jones, who in February 2019 penned a new deal until 2023, with an option for an extra year, but in that time has made just 21 appearances. There has been little interest in Wan-Bissaka, bought from Crystal Palace for £50m in 2019 under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, but who has been told by ten Hag to find a new club.

Yet while United are struggling to persuade players to come to Old Trafford, getting them out of the door is proving just as taxing, symbolic of a club in decline and without any coherent strategy.

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Mateo Kovacic, N’Golo Kante: Chelsea injury news and expected return dates before Leeds United

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Chelsea take on Leeds United on Sunday afternoon in a highly-anticipated Premier League bout at Elland Road.

The Blues have endured a turbulent start to the Premier League season; Thomas Tuchel’s side kicked off the new campaign with a 1-0 win over Everton despite a somewhat unconvincing performance,

before welcoming Tottenham Hotspur to Stamford Bridge, where an impressive display was dampened by a controversial stoppage-time equaliser.

Now, the west Londoners will be looking to translate a good performance into three points. So, with that in mind, here’s all the latest Chelsea injury news for Tuchel to contend with.

See also  Liverpool suffer potentially huge injury blow ahead of Carabao Cup final clash with Chelsea

Now, the west Londoners will be looking to translate a good performance into three points. So, with that in mind, here’s all the latest Chelsea injury news for Tuchel to contend with.

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Mateo Kovacic

One player that Tuchel won’t have at his disposal is central midfielder Kovacic, who is suffering from a slight knee issue at this moment in time

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What Tuchel said: “[Kovacic] has issues with his knee, always a little bit of a reaction. We decided to take a step back and increase treatment time to reduce the stress that comes from training to have a normal reaction before we start again. Everybody else is available

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Man United enter ‘final negotiation’ to sign £64,000-week-star

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Manchester United are in final negotiations with Barcelona to sign USA defender Sergino Dest, according to Spanish publication Sport.

The Red Devils are keen on bolstering multiple positions before the transfer deadline, and a new right-back is said to be among priorities.

Earlier this month, it was claimed that United are prepared to accelerate Aaron Wan-Bissaka’s exit in order to secure the services of Dest.

It is now reported that United are in the final phase of negotiations with the Blaugrana for Dest, who started his playing career at Ajax.

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There has been talk over a loan deal with an obligation to buy, but the Catalan giants are quite clear that they want €20 million (£17m) to offload him.

Dest was initially reluctant to leave Barcelona, but has now changed his stance. The 21-year-old is said to welcome a reunion with Erik ten Hag.

Dest would be an ideal right-back for Erik ten Hag

United lacked creativity from the right-back position last term. Diogo Dalot and Aaron Wan-Bissaka failed to register a goal or an assist in any competition.

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The trend has remained the same this season. Dalot is now the first-choice, but the Portuguese has started the new campaign in a relatively poor fashion.

Hence, there are no surprises that United are looking to land Dest. The United States star has not lived up to his expectations at Barcelona, but was impressive at Ajax.

Under Ten Hag, he made his debut for the Amsterdam giants in 2019/2020. He had a solid maiden campaign with eight goal contributions from 38 appearances.

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A reunion with Ten Hag at United could bring the best out of him. Graduating through the Ajax system, he should be familiar with the playing style under the Dutchman.

At £17m, it seems a no-brainer signing for United. He has not even entered the prime of his career, and won’t command big wages. He is currently on £64,000-a-week.

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