Ole Gunnar Solskjaer explains decision to opt for Dan James over Greenwood vs Newcastle

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer explains decision to opt for Dan James over Greenwood vs Newcastle

Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has opened up on his decision to hand Daniel James a surprise start versus Newcastle this evening.

United host Magpies

The Red Devils are set to return to action versus Steve Bruce’s men shortly, in the last of Sunday’s Premier League fixtures.

Solskjaer and co. will head into proceedings desperate to secure all 3 points, after seeing all of Manchester City, Leicester City and West Ham pick up victories over the course of the day thus far.

United, though, will no doubt be brimming with confidence ahead of kick-off at Old Trafford, on the back of a thoroughly impressive 4-0 demolition of Real Sociedad during the week.

Newcastle have plenty to play for themselves, however, with the Magpies having been dragged to within 3 points of the Premier League relegation zone, following Fulham’s win over Sheffield United last night.

As such, this evening’s hosts, whilst clear favourites, will need to have their wits about them to avoid a shock over the coming hours.

‘Deserves another start’

In turn, it came as something of a surprise when, upon Manchester United’s starting line-up for the clash being unveiled a short time ago, it became clear that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had opted for a key change to his frontline.

The switch in question came in the form of Dan James being handed his first league start since December, in place of Mason Greenwood:

Speaking during a pre-match interview, the Reds’ boss was therefore inevitably drawn on his decision to opt for the former tonight.

And Solskjaer went on to cite James’ midweek performance versus Sociedad as key, revealing his opinion that the Welsh wide-man was ‘deserving’ of a 2nd consecutive start:

‘I thought his [James] performance was excellent [against Sociedad]. He gives us energy in the pressing, he gives us runs in behind, keeps the width for us. We felt he deserves another start.’

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This article was edited by Josh Barker.

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Manchester City FC 24 34 56
2 Leicester City FC 25 17 49
3 Manchester United FC 24 19 46
4 West Ham United FC 25 10 45
5 Chelsea FC 25 16 43
6 Liverpool FC 25 11 40
7 Everton FC 24 4 40
8 Aston Villa FC 23 11 36
9 Tottenham Hotspur FC 24 10 36
10 Arsenal FC 24 6 34
11 Wolverhampton Wanderers FC 25 -6 33
12 Leeds United 24 -3 32
13 Southampton FC 24 -9 30
14 Crystal Palace FC 24 -15 29
15 Burnley FC 25 -12 28
16 Brighton & Hove Albion FC 24 -5 26
17 Newcastle United FC 24 -15 25
18 Fulham FC 25 -11 22
19 West Bromwich Albion 25 -36 14
20 Sheffield United FC 25 -26 11
Player Team Goals
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 17
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United FC 15
Kane, Harry Tottenham Hotspur FC 13
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur FC 13
Calvert-Lewin, Dominic Everton FC 13
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City FC 12
Bamford, Patrick Leeds United 12
Gundogan, Ilkay Manchester City FC 11
Wilson, Callum Newcastle United FC 10
Watkins, Ollie Aston Villa FC 10
Rashford, Marcus Manchester United FC 9
Sterling, Raheem Manchester City FC 9
Barnes, Harvey Leicester City FC 9
Zaha, Wilfried Crystal Palace FC 9
Maddison, James Leicester City FC 8
Ings, Danny Southampton FC 8
Lacazette, Alexandre Arsenal FC 8
Aubameyang, Pierre-Emerick Arsenal FC 8
Soucek, Tomas West Ham United FC 8
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 7

Source: 101greatgoals.com