Man United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer sends message to Donny van de Beek

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was pleased by Donny van de Beek's impact from the bench for Man United against Atalanta

Donny van de Beek
Donny van de Beek (Photo: Adidas)

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has hinted that Donny van de Beek will earn more playing time in the Manchester United team after his impressive cameo in the 2-2 draw with Atalanta on Tuesday night.

The Dutch midfielder has struggled to hold down a regular spot in the Manchester United team since his transfer to the club from Ajax last summer and his lack of playing time resulted in him being linked with a move away from Old Trafford in the most recent transfer window.

Van de Beek ended up remaining at the club but the 24-year-old has still seen his first-team opportunities be severely restricted this season, with the midfielder only having started two games in all competitions so far.

The Dutchman was a late substitute in Manchester United’s draw at Atalanta on Tuesday night and he was involved in the build-up to Cristiano Ronaldo’s last-gasp equalising goal in Italy.

Speaking after the game, Red Devils boss Solskjaer praised Van de Beek and fellow second-half substitute Jadon Sancho for their performances from the bench in midweek.

“I thought the qualities they have could make an impact,” said Solskjaer when asked about his substitutes on Tuesday night. “Jadon was sharp. We wanted a little bit more width on the side, because we put Edinson [Cavani] on.

“Bruno [Fernandes] played well and you want him out there, but I felt we needed a little bit more width to get the crosses in for Edinson or Cristiano.”

Focusing on Van de Beek, Solskjaer added: “Donny provided the run for the last goal and he keeps working.

“He’s got qualities in there to unlock close defences and he almost scored as well. I thought all of those who came on did well.”

Meanwhile, Manchester United will be without Raphael Varane for this weekend’s derby showdown after the French midfielder was ruled out for around a month with a hamstring injury.

The former Real Madrid star – who has made nine appearances so far this season – was forced off in the 38th minute of Manchester United’s clash against Atalanta after suffering the muscular strain.

A club statement read: “The club confirms that Raphael sustained a hamstring injury, which is expected to keep him out of action for around a month.”

Manchester United host Manchester City at Old Trafford on Saturday lunchtime before the final international break of the year.

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