The Norwegian head coach has conceded that the goalkeeper could have done better with Simon Kjaer’s stoppage-time header
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer expressed his disappointment over Manchester United’s failure to prevent Milan’s last gasp equaliser in the Europa League, admitting he has seen Dean Henderson keep out similar efforts in the past.
United were held to a 1-1 draw in the first leg of their round-of-16 tie at Old Trafford on Thursday night, with a late header from Simon Kjaer cancelling out Amad Diallo’s opener.
Solskjaer was frustrated to see his team lose their advantage in the dying moments of the game, and felt that his goalkeeper and defenders should have done more to keep the Serie A giants at bay.
What’s been said?
The Norwegian head coach told BT Sport post-match: “Very disappointed to conceded with one of the last kicks of the ball, or head.
“That makes it harder of course, but it was always going to be going down to the second game there, anyway.
“I’ve seen him [Henderson] save them, but it’s the structure that we lose. We dropped too deep and we get blocked off and they get the header on.
“We should have attacked the ball with the men we had there.
“We were a bit too slow with the possession. That’s the learning we have to get into ourselves, we have to perform every single week.
“We’re playing against good teams. Probably a draw is a fair result.”
Milan will now head back to San Siro for the return leg knowing that a 0-0 draw will be enough to send them through to the Europa League quarter-finals, having scored an all-important away goal in Manchester.
The Rossoneri looked bright right from the off, and thought they’d taken the lead when Franck Kessie fired an unstoppable volley past Henderson early in the first half, only for VAR to rule the goal out for handball.
Harry Maguire squandered United’s best chance in the opening 45 minutes when he somehow failed to find the net from half a yard out, but the hosts were able to get themselves in front early in the second period.
January signing Diallo came off the bench for the injured Anthony Martial to net his first goal for the club, producing an outstanding improvised header after being played in by Bruno Fernandes.
Milan had the final say on proceedings, with Kjaer getting free of Nemanja Matic to nod home from a corner and spark wild scenes of celebration in the visiting dugout.
When will the second leg be played?
United will head to the Italian capital for the reverse fixture of the tie on March 18, with the contest set to be played behind closed doors at San Siro.
Solskjaer’s side can reach the last eight if they win by any scoreline in Milan, but another 1-1 draw would see the tie stretch into extra-time and a possible penalty shoot-out.