Ole Gunnar Solskjaer hands Donny van de Beek assurances over Man Utd future

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has assured Donny van de Beek he has a big future at Manchester United and will start Saturday's FA Cup tie against Watford.

Van de Beek, who joined United from Ajax for £40million last summer, has struggled to establish himself and started just two Premier League games this season.

That prompted Ronald De Boer, twin of Holland boss Frank, to suggest van de Beek may have to leave United this month to safeguard his position in the Dutch squad for Euro 2020.

But Solskjaer said he has spoken to van de Beek, to reassure him of his faith in him, and said the 23-year-old midfielder will get a chance to prove his worth tonight at Old Trafford.

“I've answered this question so many times,” said Solskjaer. “There are so many examples of players needing a little bit of time, quality players.

“We have many examples ourselves and there are other clubs with examples. Sometimes it takes time.

“You don't expect people who care for him to be quiet at times, especially when they want the best for them.

“Donny is going to play tomorrow, that's another chance for him.

“I've spoken to him and reiterated and made him aware of how much we rate him.

"But he'll play tomorrow and that's another good chance to kick on.”

Solskjaer believes football should carry on, despite the current lockdown and worrying sharp rise in positive coronavirus cases reported by clubs, which has seen many games postponed.

"First of all, you're worried about what's happening in society and the country, it's a big thing," said Solskajer.

"I personally feel safe within our bubble. We've taken all the steps we've had to follow protocols and guidelines, and the players have been following as well as we can.

"What's happening outside is frightening and we have a responsibility and duty to steer clear and keep within the bubbles.

"I hope we can continue playing, because it's a positive impact for anyone.

"I feel that at home myself, when you don't have a game yourself, you're looking forward to watching a game on the telly and the mental well-being of football has been a big positive, I think."

United's new signing Facundo Pellestri tested positive for coronavirus, but Solskjaer said his squad had not returned any positive cases in the latest round of testing.

“We’ve had, from what I know, everyone clear today,” said Solskjaer. “Facundo was with the Under-23s and he had some time off over Christmas, but we can say we’re confident everyone else is clear.”

Solskjaer denied there was extra pressure on United following their Carabao Cup semi-final defeat to local rivals Manchester City in midweek.

It was the fourth competition in a row United have exited at the semi-final stage, but Solskjaer claimed that did not create additional pressure.

“Not at all,” said the United boss. “We were all disappointed on Wednesday, but were ready to go again on Thursday morning.

“We've got to bounce back and there’s still many many games to go.

“We reached the FA Cup quarter-finals in 2019, semi-finals in 2020, so hopefully we can go one step further this season.

“Then again, to get there you have to play so many games and beat so many good teams, so we have to just focus on this on Saturday.”

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