Manchester United boss says play ball

3 years ago

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Marcus Rashford’s 93rd minute strike beat Wolves 1-0 to move Manchester United into second in the Premier League as fears over the continuation of the season due to rising coronavirus infection rates grew on Tuesday.

A record 18 positive tests for COVID-19 among players and staff were detected in the weekly round of testing.

After Manchester City’s trip to Everton on Monday was postponed due to a COVID outbreak in Pep Guardiola’s squad, all five matches scheduled for Tuesday went ahead despite disruption for Sheffield United and Southampton.

Bottom-of-the-table United revealed they had suffered a number of positive cases but were still able to field a squad of 18 for their 1-0 defeat at Burnley.

Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl coached his side from his home for a 0-0 draw against West Ham after a member of his household tested positive.

The Telegraph reported the Premier League will discuss plans for a two-week circuit breaker with infection rates soaring across England.

However, Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer called for the competition to continue.

“I’m not sure if stopping playing football will make a difference,” said Solskjaer, whose side are mounting an unexpected title challenge after a slow start to the season.

“In our bubble we’ve proven to be quite (safe), we haven’t had too many cases transmitting within the group.”

On the field, United were fortunate to escape with all three points against a youthful Wolves side, who were in action just 48 hours ago against Tottenham.

In keeping with several meetings between the sides in recent years, chances were few and far between.

But United answered Solskjaer’s call to win more games late on in the style he did as a player during Alex Ferguson’s time at Old Trafford as Rashford’s shot took a wicked deflection off Romain Saiss deep into stoppage time.

“This is a big step forward that you don’t perform, but you still win,” added Solskjaer.