Date published: Thursday 6th August 2020 7:20
Paul Scholes feels Ole Gunnar Solskjaer must be seriously considering the long-term futures of two struggling stars at Manchester United.
United laboured to a 2-1 win over LASK to earn a 7-1 aggregate win and set up a quarter-final tie with Copenhagen.
But it wasn’t exactly a vintage United display and a number of stars clearly struggled. Solskjaer admitted some of them looked rusty after the game.
“Some of these lads haven’t played for a while and it showed. We won, we gave a debut to a young lad, it’s been a good night,” he said.
“It is that sharpness you lack when you don’t play regularly. Some haven’t played since lockdown, for me it was a good exercise. It’s job done, minutes under the belt and on to Copenhagen.”
However, former United star Scholes believes two of those hauled off just after the hour mark must be sweating on their futures.
Scholes insists there’s no way they can play in Monday’s quarter-final and claims they could now even be sold.
Speaking to BT Sport, Scholes said: “I’m not totally sure [on Lingard]. I do think when he’s playing well he has something to offer.
“Lately he hasn’t been good enough really. Is he a starting XI player if you’re going to go on to win the league and the big trophies at Man United? I’m not sure he is. I know he scored in the last couple of games.
“Tonight was a game where you think this is a chance for Jesse to play 90 minutes, along with Fred. But when Ole took him off after an hour, I thought this is a sign Ole is probably thinking of moving him on.
“Look, I might be totally wrong about that, but that is just the feeling I get.
“When you’ve got fringe players and you need to get them games. Tonight was a perfect opportunity for 90 minutes, he scored a goal as well. His confidence might have grown a little.
“I don’t think he was particularly great in the game. But to bring him off after an hour when I don’t think there’s any way in the world he’s going to start in the game on Monday, I think that was a little sign,
“And possibly with Fred as well, maybe the same situation, he might be thinking of offloading the pair of them.”
Dortmund make strong Sancho statement
United hope’s of signing Jadon Sancho, meanwhile, appear to have taken a tumble. That’s after Dortmund poured cold water on the prospective deal.
Dortmund’s managing director Hans-Joachim Watzke said: “So far, there has been no contact between Borussia Dortmund and Manchester United in terms of Sancho.”
His statement is qualified with: “Also not indirectly or through alleged intermediaries.”
Those sentiments are echoed by Dortmund’s sporting director, Michael Zorc. He even hinted the club expect Sancho to attend their impending training camp.
“I assume that Jadon will go to the training camp on Monday and play with us for the coming season,” said Zorc.