Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says his Manchester United side will take a lot of value from the friendly with Queens Park Rangers, despite the disappointment of being beaten 4-2 on the day.
The Reds did take an early lead at the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium, through Jesse Lingard, but the hosts scored the next four goals in an entertaining game before Anthony Elanga’s second-half strike raised hopes of a comeback.
Although the scoreline was naturally disappointing for him, the manager was able to give minutes on the pitch to 22 different players during the encounter in West London, with the majority of the starting XI getting an hour of action, as the build-up to next month’s Premier League kick-off continues.
Speaking to MUTV after the match, Ole admitted: “You’re never happy when you concede goals but [it was] a good exercise again, good learning for some of the young ones.
“It’s a check where we are, and a test where we are for the older and more experienced ones as well.
“Towards the end, I enjoyed the football the kids played. They conceded a few goals and could have crumbled but they got hold of the ball and scored a very good goal.”
Ole’s men had the opportunity to play in front of some away fans for the first time during last weekend’s pre-season opener at Derby County, and it was the same again on a sunny Saturday at the Kiyan Prince Foundation Stadium, with hundreds of United fans getting behind the team from the away end.
The boss was delighted to see the United fans inside the stadium again and praised the fans of both clubs for their vocal backing throughout the 90 minutes. He’s now hoping for a similar effect when the Reds return to Old Trafford for the visit of Brentford in Wednesday’s friendly.
“It was a great atmosphere, from both sets of supporters and especially behind the goal here was great for us,” said Ole.
“I can’t wait [to get the fans back at Old Trafford]. Hopefully, as many as possible will come and it’s not very long for the season to start so we need to get going.”
The boss, whose new contract with the club was announced earlier in the day, is looking forward to the future and wants to kick on now by taking his team to the next step over the next 10 months.
“Every season we hope to challenge to win in every competition we go into,” he said.
“To get to a position where you’re able to challenge for the trophies, you need to start the season well. That’s the focus now.
“We need to get a good start in the first game, and the first block of games, because last season we started really poorly. Then the team will gradually find out where we are, but we’re hoping to go into next April and May and challenge for big things.”