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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer warns Manchester United over Jack Grealish

Manchester United are to play Aston Villa on Thursday

Manchester United v Aston Villa - Premier League
Juan Mata with a fan
Photo by Simon Stacpoole/Offside/Getty Images

Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer warned his side of the dangers posed by Jack Grealish.

United are set to play Aston Villa on Thursday night as they continue their attempt to qualify for the Champions League spots, which would ordinarily be a top-four finish but may now be open to the fifth-placed team if Manchester City are banned from European competition.

Speaking ahead of the game, Solskjaer said:

“Last game they caused us some problems, both Grealish off the left and [Anwar] El Ghazi off the right. He scored a fantastic goal.

“There’s been lots said about him, and we need to be aware of him. He attracts players to him and creates space for others. There’s not just one player in that Villa team, there’s many of them.”

The Norwegian also thinks United could remain unbeaten for some time yet, explaining:

“As a footballer, you can’t just pick out your confidence from the pitch. You have to have it from what you do every day in training, but the results matter.

“The last 16 games unbeaten gives us more confidence. But 16 games is what a Man United team strive towards. We can still go many games unbeaten if we focus on the right things.”

He also suggested that the sale of Romelu Lukaku and the loan exit of Alexis Sanchez were decisions he stuck by, telling the press:

“This isn’t a popularity contest, that’s for sure. I’m going to make the decisions that I think are for the benefit of the club.

“The decisions we made last summer and throughout January - bringing players in and allowing players to move on - they were always for the good of the club, both in giving youngsters a chance but also in giving trust to the others.

“I would still make the decisions if I could go back six months or 12 months.”