Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has encouraged Anthony Martial, Alexis Sanchez and Romelu Lukaku to fight their way back into the first team at Old Trafford.
Speaking ahead of the game with Bournemouth on Sunday afternoon, the club’s new interim manager praised Paul Pogba for turning around his performances, but pointed out that it was a product of the player rather than his work as manager.
Solskjaer said: “I think you put it the wrong way.
“I cannot do anything for their performances on the pitch. Paul has done it. My chats with Anthony [Martial], Romelu, Alexis, I’m here to put them on the path and it’s up to them to do it on the pitch. It’s up to them when they get a chance; that’s the name of the game as a footballer – you’ve got to do it yourself.
“I gave some guidelines of course on expression, freedom of expression, but that’s how I’ve always been as a manager. You can’t tell the players what to do in this position. Just enjoy playing for this club – that’s the best time of your life.”
When asked about Sanchez and Lukaku’s poor form, Solsjkaer would not be drawn on speculating the reasons for it
“I cannot tell you,” he chirruped.
“It’s a different thing when you’re a fan on the outside. It’s easy to see he should be playing – suddenly you end up with six forwards, six centre-backs. My thing now is Romelu, Alexis, Anthony, Jesse [Lingard], Marcus [Rashford], Juan [Mata]: six forwards. The rotation and communication between players is important to know they will get chances.”