Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has told his Man Utd side to take more risks
But the Manchester United boss is adamant the way to pull his side out of their current nosedive is to take the game to the opposition – even if it is the unbeaten league leaders Liverpool.
“To start winning games, we need to start scoring goals, we need to create more chances. At the back we’ve looked solid but we haven’t been adventurous enough, taking enough risks,” he said.
“If you watch the best teams they take more risks with the ball, they make more runs in behind and that’s part of the process for the boys. When they’re losing confidence maybe they want to play it a bit more safe.
“But it’s not safety that does it here – at this club you do take risks.”
At the back we’ve looked solid but we haven’t been adventurous enough, taking enough risks
United go into tomorrow’s traditionally eagerly-awaited clash in 12th place, just two points above the relegation zone and trailing Jurgen Klopp’s side by 15 points.”
Their current rut has seen them score more than one goal in just three games out of the last 23 – toothless performances which have not been helped by injuries to forward players according to the United boss who is missing David de Gea and Paul Pogba this weekend.
But Solskjaer is hoping for better news over Anthony Martial who will take a fitness test today and could join Marcus Rashford and Daniel James up front for the first time in nine games.
With him on board the United boss is hopeful his side can cause Klopp’s table toppers problems.
“The injuries have not helped but we’re getting players back now,” said Solskjaer, who is keeping his fingers crossed Luke Shaw and Aaron Wan-Bissaka will also be available.
“I’m sure that from now until Christmas if you can see a full strength squad we’ll get the results. The last few weeks have been difficult and hard.
“But all the attitude and desire has been very good just not enough chances created, and what chances we have had haven’t been taken.
“Sometimes that’s confidence, that’s human nature, you say players missing chances they won’t normally miss but it’s up to us to keep working and get the ball in between the posts.”
Solksjaer has overseen just five wins in his 21 games in charge since his permanent appointment in late March.
Yet his statistics over his first 29 games in charge, (stretching back over his interim role as well) compare favourably to Klopp’s record at Anfield in his opening 29 Premier League games.
The United boss has earned two more points with 14 wins and seven draws compared to the Liverpool boss in his first 29 top flight matches, starting in October 2015, with 13 wins and eight draws.
Given their current trajectories it was no surprise Solksjaer was not pinning too much on such comparisons.
“I don’t hold onto stats like this and just working as planned business as usual, try to improve the team, try to work towards something but we’re heading somewhere we feel (we want to be),” he said.
“But we need results and I expect the players to come out and prove why they’re at Man United.”
Likely team: Romero; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Tuanzebe; McTominay, Matic; James, Mata, Rashford; Martial