Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is hopeful the hamstring injury Jesse Lingard sustained in Manchester United’s goalless draw with AZ Alkmaar is not as serious as first feared.
Lingard, omitted from Gareth Southgate’s latest England squad, hobbled off the plastic pitch at the Cars Jeans Arena in stoppage-time, leaving United to finish the uninspiring stalemate at the home of ADO Den Haag – AZ’s temporary home – with 10 men.
With United’s attacking options already threadbare, Solskjaer can ill afford the loss of another forward to injury ahead of a run of six away games in seven – starting with Sunday’s trip to Newcastle.
But, speaking after the 0-0 draw against AZ, the United boss suggested Lingard’s withdrawal was precautionary.
“Jesse tweaked his hamstring, he didn’t feel he could risk it,” Solskjaer said. “Hopefully it’s not too bad.”
Solskjaer delivered his reassuring message after United’s alarming away form took a turn for the worse in The Hague.
United failed to register a shot on target for the first time in a Europa League game as their winless run on the road stretched to 10 games.
But an upbeat Solskjaer insisted he was satisfied with United’s display, adding: “It’s a good point away from home against a difficult opponent on a tough surface.
“We never got to grips with the astroturf until the second half, in the first half it took time to get control of the ball and the game.
“But I’m pleased with the boys. The debut of Brandon [Williams], fantastic. You cannot see any nerves, he’s so brave, courageous when taking the ball and going forward and a great defender.
“There are many games we could and should have won, I don’t think it [the 10-game winless streak] is an issue.
“Today we got a good point away from home, if you get a point away in the group and win your home games you will go through.”
Solskjaer was less impressed with the officiating in Holland, arguing his side had been denied a clear penalty when Marcus Rashford was brought down in the area by Alkmaar defender Stijn Wuytens.
“It should have been a win,” the Norwegian added. “I’m fed up talking about penalties we should have had, Arsenal on Monday and now.
“You cannot get that decision wrong in football. The linesman looks straight at the tackle on Marcus and the defender wiped his foot off the floor.
“It’s a bad decision, unfortunately we didn’t get it, but there is no point me complaining. There will come a point when these decisions go our way, that’s my always positive belief.”
-Report by skysports
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