August 5, 2021

‘If you climb Everest and sit down, you freeze to death’ – Solskjaer warns Manchester United against complacency

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The Red Devils are at the summit of the Premier League ahead of their trip to Anfield on Sunday, but their manager has warned they must keep moving

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has warned Manchester United not to become complacent now they have topped the Premier League table.

United travel to Anfield on Sunday to face reigning champions Liverpool in a battle between the top two.

Almost a year ago to the day, Mohamed Salah and Virgil van Dijk scored in a 2-0 win over United at Anfield to take Liverpool 16 points clear, but things have been very different this season.

A 1-0 win over Burnley on Monday took the Red Devils to the summit, but Solskjaer says they have to keep moving – or they will freeze to death.

“That [turnaround] is the product of all the hard work that everyone in the club – the staff, the players, the supporters, everyone has done,” Solskjaer told United’s official website.

“There’s been loads of hard work and loads of patience to get to the position we’re in now, but it’s like if you climb Kilimanjaro or Mount Everest and you get to the top and you sit down and relax – what happens then? You’ll freeze to death. So now is the time to push on and go again.

“There is a definite shift in mentality of the boys that we can believe we can go on to bigger and better things.”

Solskjaer played plenty of games against Liverpool during his 11 years as a player at Old Trafford. He knows that, with no fans allowed into Anfield, this instalment of the rivalry will be very different – but it is still a fixture to look forward to.

“I loved it. I loved playing in big games, I didn’t play many of them because loads of times I was on the bench coming on,” he said.

“I played when Diego [Forlan] scored a couple [at Anfield] and I absolutely loved the intensity of it and celebrating in front of our fans. I was on the bench when Pally [Gary Pallister] scored a couple of headers too.

“When there are fans there and you can quieten them down and the away fans are singing louder than the home fans then that’s a great feeling. Now we don’t have any home fans to quieten down, so it’s a different mindset going into the game.

“I think the results over the last year or nine or 10 months or so have shown how important the fans are. The win-rate away from home compared to home, shows that the fans do play a big part in football and the passion that they give.

“I cannot wait to get everyone back but in the meantime, we’ll do whatever we can to please everyone who is at home.”