Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says striker Romelu Lukaku was sold because he didn’t suit Manchester United’s attacking style.
Lukaku secured a deadline day move to Inter Milan for £74m after falling out of favour at Old Trafford and training away from the club.
What is Manchester United’s attacking style? Five things to know…
- Solskjaer favours a fast, counter-attacking style.
- Since his appointment, United recorded the joint-most ‘fast breaks’ in the Premier League (18).
- Last season saw him use Lingard, Rashford and Martial as his preferred front-line.
- Lukaku scored 15 goals in all competitions last season but the United boss says he does not want a “target man”.
- This appears to be one of the reasons they decided not to sign a replacement centre-forward, such as Mario Mandzukic.
United host Chelsea on Sunday in what promises to be an intriguing clash. Speaking to the media ahead of that, Solskjaer explained the reasons behind Lukaku’s departure.
He said: “Of course Rom has a good record and stats – he’s one of the top number nines around when you want to play with that kind of striker – he’s a target man.
“[But] for me, I’m very confident that we’ll get goals from [Anthony] Martial, Rashford… Dan James will come in and create, Jesse Lingard will get more. We have a different attacking set-up this season.
“It was time for Rom to go because I think we got a good deal. He’s happy so I think both parties ended that deal as it should be. Rom was injured for a while in pre-season and didn’t participate so I just hope for him he’ll get a good start at Inter.
“I have always had a good relationship with Rom, open and honest. We’ve spoken to each other openly and frankly and I have no issue with him at all. But now, whoever’s in here, we’re very happy with them.”
Subscribe to Squawka’s Youtube channel here.
A spearhead of youth for Solskjaer’s United?
In what will be fantastic news for United fans, it appears this season’s attack will be comprised of youngsters. Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial appear to be the two main men in their dynamic forward line: Rashford was given the No.10 shirt last season and, on Friday, Martial was re-awarded the No.9 shirt.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) August 9, 2019
However, the name on everyone’s lips will be 17-year-old Mason Greenwood. The youngster lit up the U-18 Premier League last season, scoring 31 goals in 30 games before making his first-team debut in the 2-0 defeat against Cardiff at the end of 2018/19.
He has impressed during pre-season and boasts impressive ability with both feet. Solskjaer has given him a lot of responsibility this summer and it appears the youngster could be thrown in at the deep end when the season kicks off.