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'Maguire has been really important for us' - Solskjaer admits Man Utd missed captain in Liverpool reverse

00:01 BST 14/05/2021
Harry Maguire Man Utd 2020-21
The Norwegian was left lamenting the absence of the centre-back following a frustrating night at Old Trafford

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has admitted that Manchester United missed Harry Maguire during their 4-2 loss to Liverpool on Thursday night.

Liverpool picked up their first win at Old Trafford since 2014 thanks to a Roberto Firmino double and goals from Diogo Jota and Mohamed Salah, with Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford grabbing what ultimately amounted to nothing more than consolation efforts for the hosts.

Maguire was unavailable for selection for the second successive game due to an ankle injury, and Solskjaer has conceded that the Red Devils suffered in his absence.

What's been said?

The Norwegian boss also called on his players to put the result behind them quickly and raise their game for their final two Premier League fixtures and the Europa League final at the end of the month.

"Harry [Maguire] has been really important for us so of course, we're going to miss him but he's out so we have to deal with that," Solskjaer told Sky Sports.

"It's about regrouping and building our own confidence again as we have two games and a final.

"Tuesday. We need to find ourselves straight away. We need to build that momentum and confidence. We should go into that final ready."

United humbled by Liverpool

United got off to the best possible start at Old Trafford when Fernandes opened the scoring with a deflected effort 10 minutes in, but Jota hit back with a close-range finish just after the half-hour mark.

A powerful Firmino header gave Liverpool the lead just before half-time and he grabbed his second two minutes after the interval, turning the ball home after reacting quickest to a rebound.

Edinson Cavani then set up Rashford to fire past Reds No.1 Alisson and set up a tense finale, but the visitors made sure of all three points in the 90th minute when Salah raced through to finish off a swift counter-attack.

Solskjaer refused to offer any excuses for the defeat, but did lament his team's lack of killer instinct when on top of proceedings in the first half.

"They deserved the win. We conceded goals in key moments of the game," the United boss added. "We didn't build on the momentum or break up their momentum. We gave them at least two goals. Key moments went against us.

"We didn't build on the good times. We should have gone more for it at the start of the game. Sometimes we let them off the hook and let them play out."

What's next?

United will now prepare for another home fixture against Fulham on Tuesday, which comes five days before they finish their Premier League campaign against Wolves at Molineux.

Solskjaer's side are then due to come up against Villarreal in the Europa League final on May 26 in Gdansk, Poland, where they will be seeking their first trophy since 2017.

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