Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was frustrated with how Manchester United failed to build on a promising start against Watford.
Manchester United made it through to the FA Cup fourth round with a 1-0 victory over Championship opposition at Old Trafford on Saturday, with Donny van de Beek impressing.
The hosts burst out of the blocks with 11 shots in the first 21 minutes, managing only eight more in the 70 thereafter.
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Solskjaer saw progression as key after the Carabao Cup semi-final defeat to Manchester City in midweek, but noted that his players struggled to cope when momentum shifted in the favour of Watford.
“I thought we started really brightly, played some nice football, got in behind them, created some chances, got the first goal,” he told BT Sport, as quoted by the official Manchester United website.
“After 15 or 20 minutes it seemed like the balloon popped and they came into the game, we gave them confidence and they really gave us a good game.”
Pushed further on “what did go wrong” by interviewer Des Kelly, Solskjaer replied: “We started giving them the ball back easily, we tried to complicate it, maybe one or two men out of position and then suddenly they counter-attack and when you’ve got Andre Gray or Ismaila Sarr running at you, you’re always going to have the heart way up here.
“You’re through and that’s the main thing. I didn’t expect us to start this well, because it’s a team that’s not really played together and they’ve not really played for a while, and you expect them to grow into the game. But it was a really good start.”