Solskjaer provides Martial & Shaw fitness update ahead of Man Utd’s clash with PSG

The Norwegian boss is putting the finishing touches on his squad before a crucial Champions League showdown against the French champions

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has revealed the progress Anthony Martial and Luke Shaw are making in terms of their fitness ahead of Manchester United’s clash with Paris Saint-Germain.

United will welcome PSG to Old Trafford on Wednesday night for a crucial Champions League group-stage showdown which will likely have a huge bearing on who qualifies from Group H.

Solskjaer’s men are sitting top of the standings on nine points after four fixtures, with their French opponents three points further back in second.

RB Leipzig are only behind PSG on goal difference at the moment, and they will be expected to pick up a victory away at Istanbul Basaksehir as they aim to put more pressure on PSG to get a positive result in Manchester.

United only need a point to qualify for the round of 16, but Solskjaer has been sweating on the availability of Martial and Shaw, both of whom sat out Saturday’s comeback win at Southampton.

Martial was struck down with a bout of illness 24 hours before the trip to St Mary’s, while Shaw has been out of action since suffering a hamstring injury against Everton on November 7.

Solskjaer has confirmed that he will be able to call upon the former against PSG, but he is delaying making a final decision on the full-back until the last minute.

“Anthony got through the session and felt okay, so he’s available for selection,” the Norwegian said during a pre-match Q&A session for MUTV. “Luke is probably the biggest doubt but the rest of them are holding their hands up saying: ‘I’m ready’.

“Luke isn’t too far away so let’s see what we do with him for tomorrow. Then, of course, Phil [Jones] has been away for a long time but now we’re getting more and more players ready to participate in every game.”

Solskjaer also delivered a fresh update on first-choice goalkeeper David de Gea, who was forced off at half-time against Southampton after sustaining a knock to his ankle.

“David trained well today, as did the rest of the group. It was a good session,” he said.

The last time United played host to PSG on Europe’s biggest stage they were beaten 2-0 in a last-16 first-leg tie, before producing a stunning turnaround in the second leg at Parc des Princes to book their place in the last eight.

Solskjaer is expecting his team to provide the French champions with a far greater challenge almost two years on from that meeting, as he added: “I feel we are ready for this game and I feel better prepared for the occasion. I think some of these boys learnt harsh lessons against PSG and then, home and away, against Barcelona that season.

“The Champions League is what we all want to be part of, playing against the best players in the world. You’ve got the likes

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De Gea facing fitness check after coming off injured in Man Utd’s win at Southampton

Dean Henderson was subbed on to make his Premier League debut for the Red Devils at St Mary’s

David de Gea is an injury worry for Manchester United, with manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer admitting the goalkeeper will be assessed by the club’s medical team after coming off injured against Southampton.

The Spain international did not come out for the second half – being replaced by Dean Henderson – after appearing to damage his knee when beaten for a second time at St Mary’s on Sunday.

De Gea dived to his right in a bid to keep out James Ward-Prowse’s free kick, but failed to make the save and collided with the post.

Henderson was seen going through a rigorous warm-up at half-time, and was subbed on for his Premier League debut for the club.

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Following the game, Solskjaer spoke to Sky Sports about De Gea’s injury and said he is unsure if he will be fit to face Paris Saint-Germain in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday evening.

“Let’s have a little check on him (David de Gea),” Solskjaer said . “Hopefully he can be okay for Wednesday but I’m not sure.”

While United trailed 2-0 at the break, they produced a thrilling fightback and thanks to a goal from Bruno Fernandes and brace from Edinson Cavani were able to secure a 3-2 win.

United dominated after the interval, meaning Henderson’s Premier League bow for the club was not overly taxing, but Solskjaer felt the 23-year-old was polished in what he did.

“Dean played well though,” the Norwegian said. “He’s a keeper who has been used to being vocal. He wants to organise the team. 

“He had a couple of tidy saves to make. He was safe with his hands. After the first half, we played well again.”

If De Gea is ruled out of the PSG game, it will hand Henderson a major stage to operate on.

Neymar, Kylian Mbappe and co. are likely to provide a stern test of United’s defensive resolve, particularly as PSG trail the Red Devils by three points in Champions League Group G.

A commanding performance from Henderson could make him difficult to dislodge – with a rapid turnaround of games on the horizon.

Following PSG’s visit to Old Trafford, the Red Devils take on West Ham, RB Leipzig, Manchester City, Sheffield United, Leeds United and Everton before Christmas.

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