Solskjaer: Fernandes practised free-kicks for 45 minutes on Saturday

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer praised his side’s resilience as they edged rivals Liverpool 3-2 in the FA Cup fourth round – and reserved special adulation for match-winner Bruno Fernandes.

Fernandes came off the bench to win the game with an expertly placed free-kick after the sides had traded the lead.

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Speaking to BBC Sport, Solskjaer said: “Brilliant – you know when you go a goal down, the reaction of everyone was really good.

“We played some really good stuff, good goals, we have to defend well against them and we managed to react well and of course towards the end there were some moments but we kept them away.”

The Norwegian praised Fernandes’ dedication on the training ground for the goal that proved the winner.

“Great goal, good free kick,” he said.

“When you leave him out like I did today, he stayed about 45 minutes after training yesterday shooting free kicks so I was pretty confident he could score one if he got the chance.

“He’s never happy with me when I tell him to go inside after training when he’s playing the next day so he got some practice yesterday.

“Marcus [Rashford] has played up front, down the right and left and we felt if we could switch the ball early today we could attack them because Liverpool defend on the front foot so we have to be quick on the ball, we did that well.”

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Fernandes was pleased to mark a year at the club with yet another goal, in what has been a brilliant time at Old Trafford.

“We played well, we created a lot of chances, pressed them more than the game in the league,” Fernandes told BBC Sport.

“A lot, it is a dream come true to pay for this club in the Premier League.

“Everyone knows and I know now the fans are happy and will have a good week.”

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Mbappé y Haaland tienen precio

Kylian Mbappé y Erling Haaland son dos de los futbolistas sobre los que tiene el foco la directiva del Real Madrid. Cualquiera de los dos podría liderar el proyecto blanco de la próxima década. Incluso se ha llegado a especular con la idea de incorporar a uno ahora y, en un futuro, juntarlos en una misma plantilla. Sin embargo, no va a ser barato.

El Centro Internacional de Estudios Deportivos (CIES) ha elaborado una lista de los jugadores con un mayor valor de mercado estimado entre las cinco grandes ligas. A través de una serie de parámetros que incluyen desde el rendimiento a la edad, la reconocida institución ha establecido que ambos futbolistas se encuentran entre los diez más caros.

Erling Haaland ocupa el segundo puesto. El delantero noruego de 20 años cuesta 152 millones de euros. Los 32 goles que ha anotado en 2020 han disparado su valor. Además, ha demostrado una capacidad de adaptación fuera de lo normal en el Borussia Dortmund, donde en apenas unos meses se ha convertido en la referencia ofensiva.

Kylian Mbappé ocupa el quinto puesto (149 millones), pero tiene truco. El estudio tiene en cuenta los años de contrato que le quedan a cada futbolista, por lo que computa que el francés finaliza su vínculo con el Paris Saint-Germain en 2022. Esto reduce notablemente su valor.

Marcus Rashford, la nueva joya del mercado

El delantero inglés del Manchester United, Marcus Rashford, se ha convertido en el futbolista más caro del mundo para CIES, con un valor estimado de 165.6 millones de euros. El top-5 lo completan el lateral del Liverpool Trent Alexander-Arnold, que ocupa el tercer puesto (151.6 millones), y el mediocampista del Manchester United Bruno Fernandes, que es cuarto (151.1)

Hablando de equipos españoles, el primero en la lista es el portugués del Atlético de Madrid Joao Felix, que es séptimo (141.5). Un poco más abajo, en el puesto 18º y 20º, el FC Barcelona tiene a Ansu Fati (108.4) y Frenkie de Jong (105.7) respectivamente.

El primer jugador del Real Madrid ocupa el puesto 50º. Se trata de Federico Valverde, con un valor estimado de 74.5 millones. Antes aparecen nombres como Ferrán Torres (100.9), Rodrigo Hernández (97.6), Pedri (96.4) o Saúl Ñíguez (88.4).

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“Real Madrid attacking midfielder could move to Arsenal this winter to save their season, Manchester United may be able to loan out Phil Jones to Derby County, and Jesse Lingard is wanted by Sheffield United in January. Meanwhile, Liverpool are keen on Birmingham teenager Calum Scanlon to strengthen their youth side.”

Rashford feels United are close to being Premier League title contenders

Marcus Rashford believes Manchester United are on the brink of being Premier League title contenders.

The Red Devils have not lifted the Premier League since 2013, the final season of Sir Alex Ferguson’s reign, and have not really threatened to do so in the intervening period.

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The club’s most recent piece of silverware was the Europa League under Jose Mourinho in 2017. They are out of the Champions League already, but are not far off the pace in the Premier League and Rashford feels it is within their grasp.

“I believe that the team that we have now is capable of winning big trophies,” the England forward told the official Manchester United podcast. “We are not quite there but I feel like we are close. We just need to make that final push to be a team that can win trophies and fight for everything.

In the big games, we go toe-to-toe with any team and we know that we can do it. We have confidence on the pitch that we can beat them, whether it is Liverpool, Manchester City or Paris Saint-Germain.

“The league’s wide open. Four games ago, everybody was saying ‘United are finished.’ But then we won three games on the spin.”

United are seventh in the Premier League on 23 points, eight points adrift of leaders Liverpool with two games in hand. The England forward feels the players need to block out outside noise and focus on taking the fight to their rivals.

“We have to find a way to block everything out and just concentrate on what matters, which is taking it one game at a time and picking up points,” Rashford said. “We have to go back to spells where it’s worked, where we’ve won 10 or 11 games, and just do it again. Because I believe this year, the team that does that is the team that’s going to go on and win the league.

“We have to show that we’re ready to step up and be that team that’s going to be fighting for the title. We’re so close to being the team that we all want to be. But it doesn’t matter if you’re that close or a million miles away, if you’re not there, you’re not there. We need to show that we are there and the only way to do that is to do it on the pitch.”

(With additional reporting from Reuters)

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