Mon. Nov 23rd, 2020

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Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer praises Dayot Upamecano

2 min read

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Manchester United can see Dayot Upamecano ‘close up’ in their Champions League tie with RB Leipzig on Wednesday night.

United scouted centre-back Upamecano, 22, when he was a teenager but decided against moving for the France international, who was heavily linked with a summer move to Old Trafford. Upamecano is contracted to Leipzig until 2023 but has a reputed €42million release clause and is expected to leave next year.

United did not regard a centre half as a priority in the summer but conceded 12 goals in their first four Premier League matches, despite investing £130m on defenders Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Harry Maguire last year.

“There’s always rumours and speculation about good players for Manchester United,” Solskjaer said. “I’ve always tried to respect they are players for other teams and don’t want to comment on every player we are linked to.

“But since he’s playing against us tomorrow, I know he’s a very good player and we can see him close up tomorrow.”

Leipzig reached the semi-finals of the Champions League last season, are currently top of the Bundesliga and unbeaten in their first five league games.

The club was founded in 2009 and is widely disliked by German football followers for trampling over the membership rules in the country and Leipzig is viewed as a marketing strategy for the drinks brand Red Bull.

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Their 33-year-old coach, Julian Nagelsmann, arrived from Hoffenheim last year and has already been linked with taking over at Bayern Munich and a host of English clubs.

“They are a club that has come up through the ranks very impressively and almost improved every season,” Solskjaer added. “Last season, third in the Bundesliga, they’ve started really well, got to the semi-finals and are really going for the big trophies.

“You have a young, proactive, interesting coach to watch who’s very adaptable and with players who’ve got high energy, high tempo, all in all, they’ve been very interesting to follow the last few years.”

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