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‘We need to get strong Man Utd back’ – Phelan hoping to make amends for ‘poor finish’ in 2018-19

9:59 AM GMT 16/07/2019
Paul Pogba Manchester United
The Red Devils' assistant manager is looking for Ole Gunnar's Solskjaer's side to deliver greater consistency during the upcoming campaign

Manchester United are looking to make amends for their “poor finish” in 2018-19, says Mike Phelan, with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and his coaching staff working hard to make the team more consistent.

The Red Devils enjoyed a mid-season resurgence last term after the managerial baton was passed from Jose Mourinho to Solskjaer.

They were, however, to end the campaign with a sorry run of just two wins in 12 games across all competitions.

Efforts are being made during the summer transfer window to bolster the ranks at Old Trafford, while pre-season preparations are now well underway in Australia.

Assistant manager Phelan claims to have seen plenty of signs of encouragement, with everyone associated with the Red Devils endeavouring to bring back the United of old.

“We're piecing everything together,” Phelan told the club’s official website.

“We've asked the players to do more and we're getting that response from them. You can see the intensity in training is high.

“We need to keep pushing and pushing. We're not just preparing them for the first game of the season [against Chelsea on August 11] but preparing them for the season.

“We all know last season was difficult - a great start but poor finish. We need to make sure now that the energy, stamina and enthusiasm is in the players right from the start.

“It's not just fitness. We want them to be mentally tough as well to experience what it really is about Manchester United - it's right to the end, from start to finish.

“We had periods in games where we looked really at it and really strong but then faded. We need to get that Man Utd back, that goes right the way through 96 minutes, which is a game of football nowadays, and we're preparing them for that. 

“The players have to understand how it feels to be fatigued and then go again. We're trying to get that into them, both in their minds and in their bodies.”

United will be back in action on Wednesday when they take in a meeting with old adversaries Leeds.

They then have further fixtures to come against Inter, Tottenham and AC Milan in the International Champions Cup and a friendly clash with Kristiansund before the next Premier League season kicks off.