Ole Solskjaer has encouraged his Man United players to handle the championship talk like some other ‘noise’ around the club. Whereas, United has faced a lot of criticism this season, particularly after their departure from the Champions League earlier this month and their indifferent home form.
Last weekend’s 6-2 thrashing of Leeds sparked suggestions that they could still mount an unlikely title push while Wednesday’s 2-0 win over Everton at the Carabao Cup quarter-finals further improved their silverware chances.
The Red Devils recovered from the club’s worst-ever start to a Premier League season to eventually finish in the Champions League places – and celebrated this achievement by spectacularly crashing out of the Champions League.
When asked about the title, Solskjaer said: “There is noise around Man Utd anyway, so for us it’s about improving as a team, taking one game at a time – and we have to, that’s the name of the game.
“That is the only way that you are going to challenge for anything at the end of the season anyway so it’s not something that we talk about.”
“The only thing that we talk about and focus on is improving day by day and learning, and how to deal with certain situations and maybe now at the moment we are getting praise and that’s another thing to learn to deal with.”
He added: “It’s going to catch up with you if you are going to give teams a lead, and Leicester are one of those teams that you definitely don’t want to give a one or two-goal lead to because they have so many players on the transition that you can easily concede two or three or four, so we have to start as well as we did (on Wednesday).
“We started really well, and against Leeds, and of course the first goal in any game is a very important one.”
Solskjaer said: “We have had some very good games against Leicester, very tight games. They are a very good side with a very good coach and I have enjoyed watching them under Brendan (Rodgers).
“It was a big test for us to go to their stadium in the summer and we passed that one with flying colors.”
But faith is strong, and Wednesday’s performance in Goodison Park has improved the feel-good element, with late goals accomplished by Edinson Cavani and Anthony Martial.
‘We played a controlled game but I know it will not be the same now because it’s a different time of the season and they have got some threats that you have to look for.’
‘Every time you win a game you get energy and it boosts your morale and belief,’ said Solskjaer, whose side will host rivals Manchester City in the semi-finals on January 6.
‘Results breed good spirit and good mood and it breeds confidence.’
Manchester United will visit the Foxes on Saturday afternoon, and if they could win the match it will extend their away winning streak to a wonderful record for them.