Following the Uruguayan striker’s stellar performance this past Sunday, Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer reckons that Edinson Cavani made a great impact as the Red Devils defeated Southampton 3-2 at St Mary’s Stadium.
Cavani came off from the bench to help Ole’s side to secure their first goal before scoring two astonishing headers. United came back from two goals down to beat Southampton.
“Edinson made a great impact. He’s one of the best and cleverest movers in the box. He can peel off you, he can get in front of you. Sometimes it works for you and he certainly had an impact today,” Ole said in a post-match press conference.
Man United also set a new club record of eight straight wins away games in the Premier League.
The Norwegian mentor added that Cavani reminds him of Andy Cole by the way he plays when given a chance.
“I’ve not made him, he’s made himself. He reminds me of Andy Cole by the way, with his movement inside the box; he’s so sharp, clever, great timing. He’s not learned off me because he wasn’t ready when the second half started. I was always ready and had studs on, so he made us wait a little bit too much for my liking,” he said.
The Red Devils mentor also put on record that he recalled a piece of advice that Sir Alex Ferguson gave him many years ago on strikers.
“Edinson has been around the block and scored so many goals and played football for so long. He’s been between those posts so many times, he’s seen this game before. He knows exactly where to move and his best friend in the box is what Sir Alex always used to tell me: ‘Your best friend in the box is space’, and he gets into that space with perfect timing,” The 47-year-old manager recalled.
Ole is elated that Cavani provides competition, experience and a different alternative to his striking force. Cavani has scored three goals for United in all competitions this season.
“He had a great career and scored goals wherever he’s been. He’s so professional, so meticulous in his preparation, in his recovery, what he does at meal-times, before the game, during the game. So I was surprised when he didn’t have his boots on when the second half started. Also, to have a focal point in the box is important for us, we’ve not really had that since Romelu [Lukaku] left,” Ole stated.
“Anthony [Martial], Marcus [Rashford], Mason [Greenwood], they’re different types of forwards. He gives us a great balance and a mix, so we wanted to mix it up and had an impact.”
By Mauwane Raophala