Solskjaer explains Cristiano Ronaldo replacement in United defeat: “We have to take care of him” | Champions League

Asked about the decision to have replaced Cristiano Ronaldo and Bruno Fernandes in Manchester United’s defeat by Young Boys, coach Ole Solskjaer said he wanted to spare the Portuguese pair. After lose 2 to 1, the coach reiterated that the number 7 shirt needs to be preserved when possible.

“He (Cristiano Ronaldo) is exceptional, but we have to take care of him and it seemed the time to take him out,” said the coach.

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Manchester United had Wan-Bissaka sent off in the 35th minute of the first half in Switzerland and took the turn in the second stage. The English team had only two submissions in the match, both at the feet of Cristiano Ronaldo, author of the team’s goal. Solkjaer understood that Matic and Lingard could help the Red Devils at least get out of Switzerland’s draw.

– It was 70 minutes into the game, they (Cristiano Ronaldo and Bruno Fernandes) ran a lot on Saturday and today, the synthetic turf weighed too and we wanted the experience of Nemanja (Matic) to hold the ball and the legs of Jesse (Lingard) – evaluated.

Cristiano Ronaldo and Bruno Fernandes on the bench after being replaced in United’s loss to Young Boys — Photo: REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

Lingard joined Cristiano Ronaldo’s vacancy and made the decisive mistake in the Young Boys’ comeback, with the retreat at the feet of Siebatcheu, author of the Swiss second goal. Solskjaer lamented the failure and recalled last season when United also lost decisive points and did not advance to the round of 16.

– This is top-level football. An inattention, you make a mistake and you are punished. We did last year, we we allowed one or two sloppy counterattacks against Istanbul Basaksehir and lost that game. Today, in the final seconds, Jesse (Lingard) wanted to leave safely and made a wrong pass and we conceded the goal. This happens in football.

“Surely, if Jesse had the chance again, he would have spun and kicked the other way. But we learned from this”, he guaranteed.

Manchester United were in the bottom of Group F. In the other game of the group, Villarreal and Atalanta drew 2-2. The Red Devils return to the field in Champions on the 29th, against Villarreal, at Old Trafford.