Manchester United legend Gary Neville has praised Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s tactics as his former side beat rivals Manchester City 2-0 on Sunday. Goals from Anthony Martial and Scott McTominay gave United a crucial win in the race for the Champions League qualification places. The Red Devils now sit fifth in the Premier League table which currently would qualify them for Europe’s elite club competition, pending City’s appeal against their European ban from UEFA.
Martial put United ahead after half an hour, volleying home after a well-worked free kick from Brono Fernandes.
McTominay secured all three points deep into second-half stoppage time with a long-range effort, with City goalkeeper Ederson out of his goal.
Neville was co-commentating on the match and heaped praise on his old team-mate Solskjaer for executing his plan against Pep Guardiola’s team.
“It was a big, big day for Manchester United,” Neville said on Sky Sports.
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“Chelsea won earlier on and applied the pressure, it meant it was more desperate and Manchester United got the win and they really did dig in.
“Manchester City played some good football, below par in the final third but they had possession.
“Manchester United’s first goal was critical but the plan from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer worked.”
Old Trafford was buzzing after the final whistle and legendary captain Roy Keane was pleased to witness the win.
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“It’s brilliant, electric,” Keane said.
“I think the fans needed that today, I think Ole needed it, the club.
“I mentioned earlier in terms of their recovery and if they can get back to the very top.
“Brilliant performance, it was not pretty, it was dogged.
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“To me they showed a lot of pride, a lot of spirit, brilliant. It was great to be here, I really enjoyed it.”
Keane did claim at half time that the free kick that led to Martial’s goal should not have counted.
“No I didn’t think it was a free kick,” the Irishman said.
“You’re talking about a derby game, it’s going to be physical, and I think [Ilkay Gundogan] gets a good connection on the ball.
“Bruno does well to win the free kick and then a bit of craft from Bruno, you’ve got [Sergio] Aguero who’s sleeping, know your players.
“And of course, I don’t know what’s going on at the moment with these goalkeepers but he’s got to save it.
“But clever from United, there’s obviously a signal there, Martial good strike on target, that’s what you want to see from your players.
“He’s onside just about but Aguero’s sleeping. But the more you look at it, a top-class goalkeeper has to save it. No excuse.”
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