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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer steers clear of Financial Fair Play debate

Manchester City won a CAS appeal against their two-year exclusion from European competition on Monday,

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer kept his counsel about Manchester City’s successful appeal against a European ban (Peter Powell/NMC Pool)

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer kept his counsel about Manchester City’s successful appeal against a European ban (Peter Powell/NMC Pool)

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer kept his counsel about Manchester City’s successful appeal against a European ban (Peter Powell/NMC Pool)

Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was reluctant to be drawn into the conversation surrounding the lifting of Manchester City’s European ban.

City won an appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport against their two-year exclusion from European competition on Monday, which had been imposed by UEFA for alleged Financial Fair Play breaches.

Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho branded the CAS decision a “a disgrace” and Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp said Monday was not “a good day for football”, but Solskjaer was more withdrawn when asked about it.

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Solskjaer would not get drawn into the conversation about Pep Guardiola’s club (Nick Potts/PA)

Solskjaer would not get drawn into the conversation about Pep Guardiola’s club (Nick Potts/PA)

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Solskjaer would not get drawn into the conversation about Pep Guardiola’s club (Nick Potts/PA)

“Well, I think other people can debate that and they want to debate that,” the United boss said. “I don’t think that’s my job.

“My job is to make sure that we focus on the next game and that we just do the right things.

“But with Financial Fair Play, it was brought into keep football and football clubs financially sustainable and I think that’s important and they also give us rules to adhere to.

“That’s what we’re focusing on and let other people discuss what’s right and wrong and what’s happened.”

Solskjaer started the press conference by praising Marcus Rashford, who became the youngest person to receive an honorary doctorate from The University of Manchester for his work campaigning against child poverty.

“We’re so proud of Marcus,” the United boss said. “I’ve said it a few times, but he’s a great person and great human being.

“He cares about so much more than himself and the work he’s done shows he cares so much more about others than himself.

“So, very proud of him and hopefully he’ll keep his personality for the rest of his life, just keep on being yourself.”

Luke Shaw and Brandon Williams were forced off against Southampton on Monday evening, but both could be involved at Selhurst Park.

Asked about their availability for Thursday’s trip to Crystal Palace, Solskjaer said: “Luke has got, well, a swollen ankle, so hopefully (he can be available).

“I’ll give him as much time as possible to recover. It was a twist on his ankle.

“Brandon cut up his eye there, so I don’t really know.

“We’ve not trained this morning. None of them trained yesterday, so they were both swollen. I’ll give them as much time as possible to get the swelling away.”

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Luke Shaw was forced off during Monday’s match against his former club (Peter Powell/NMC Pool)

Luke Shaw was forced off during Monday’s match against his former club (Peter Powell/NMC Pool)

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Luke Shaw was forced off during Monday’s match against his former club (Peter Powell/NMC Pool)

The United manager has named the starting line-up for fifth successive Premier League matches, but there are a few unnamed knocks to deal with.

“The team selection for Thursday is based on Thursday, not Sunday,” Solskjaer said when asked about the impact of the upcoming FA Cup semi-final against Wembley.

“Sunday is irrelevant, doesn’t come into my head at all, so just Thursday.

“We’ll see the injury situation. There was a couple of doubts before the Southampton one, but they all reported fit on the day.

“Hopefully we can give them time now, not having to leave players out because of injury.

“But, as you say, there might be one or two fresh legs coming in.”

PA