Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Says Manchester United 'Can Go All the Way' in UCL

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistMarch 7, 2019

PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 06:  Manchester United Head Coach / Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer celebrates at the end of the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 Second Leg match between Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester United at Parc des Princes on March 6, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images)
Matthew Ashton - AMA/Getty Images

Caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer believes his Manchester United side can "go all the way" in the UEFA Champions League after their remarkable victory over Paris Saint-Germain in the last 16. 

Marcus Rashford netted a stoppage-time penalty at the Parc des Princes on Wednesday to earn United a 3-1 away win and put them through to the quarter-finals on away goals after a 2-0 defeat in the first leg:

James Ducker @TelegraphDucker

This is the 1st time in 107 attempts that a team has overturned a 2-0 home deficit to progress in the European Cup. Gives some perspective to the scale of United's achievement, not least given the make up of the team. Seriously ballsy performance.Smalling, Lindelof, Lukaku superb

Romelu Lukaku's first-half double had given United hope, and PSG were unable to hold out despite Juan Bernat making it 3-1 on aggregate with his 12th-minute goal.

The late penalty was controversially awarded, with Slovenian referee Damir Skomina adjudging Presnel Kimpembe had handled the ball in the box when blocking Diogo Dalot's speculative shot (U.S. only):

Bleacher Report Live @brlive

It was a historic night in Paris for Manchester United as the Red Devils completed a stunning comeback against PSG to advance to the Champions League quarterfinals 😮 https://t.co/WiweRaBPkx

Solskjaer hailed Rashford for keeping his cool at such a crucial moment, per the Daily Mail's Chris Wheeler:

"Of course, we fancy ourselves. We can go all the way, but we just have to wait for the draw and take the game as it comes. We always believed, that's the thing. This is what we do. That's Man United. The belief in the boys was what we hoped for.

"[Rashford's] fearless. He's got no doubt. When you're young, you don't have any fear. I wasn't sure we'd score. I've been in the Champions League with Molde and we got a last-minute penalty against Basel and missed it.

"The referee had a big call to make and [Kimpembe] made himself bigger so it's a clear penalty apparently. I didn't see it [the incident]. I hope it's the right decision. I tried to help the referee to calm my staff down."

The Norwegian continued his remarkable run as United manager, as he picked up his 14th win in 17 games since succeeding Jose Mourinho.

Famously a Champions League winner himself in 1999, Solskjaer revealed former manager Sir Alex Ferguson and club legend Eric Cantona were in the dressing room after the match, per Wheeler: "It's great to see the boss (Ferguson) in there. Of course, he's happy and proud as well. This is how we do things at Man United."

Manchester United @ManUtd

Legends. ✊ #MUFC https://t.co/l7x74snTs6

United have won all nine of the away matches they have played under Solskjaer.

Perhaps most remarkable about Wednesday's victory was that they did it without 10 first-team players:

B/R Football @brfootball

Good luck in Paris 🤕 https://t.co/g8X1JBmqKo

By the time the penalty was awarded, United had three teenagers on the pitch in Dalot, Tahith Chong and Mason Greenwood.

Solskjaer had to make do without any of his first-choice central midfielders, but Fred and Scott McTominay stepped up with impressive performances:

Liam Canning @LiamPaulCanning

Fred and McTominay absolutely bossed United's midfield. Very happy for Fred and hope he can kick on now.

The draw will be key to how United progress in the Champions League this season.

Given Wednesday's performance, they will be confident of winning anywhere and of beating the three other clubs that have also already booked their quarter-final spots: Ajax, Porto and Tottenham Hotspur.

Barcelona, Atletico Madrid and Manchester City are favourites to fill the next three berths, while Bayern Munich and Liverpool's last-16 tie is too close to call after a 0-0 draw in the opening leg at Anfield.

The draw for the last eight will take place on March 15 after the quarter-finals lineup has been completed.


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