Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku has heaped praise upon caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjær following his arrival at the club.
Former Red Devils boss Jose Mourinho was sacked last month and the club decided to bring in Solskjær as his temporary replacement.
How strong is the Solskjær effect? Five things you need to know…
- United have won all five games since Solskjær took over from Mourinho in December.
- They have scored 16 goals in those matches, including 14 in the Premier League.
- United are now just three points of fifth-placed Arsenal and six off fourth-placed Chelsea.
- And Lukaku has hailed Solskjær for the positive changes he has made to United and himself.
- Lukaku has scored three goals in three games under Solskjær this season, after six in the previous 22 with Mourinho in charge.
Lukaku – who struggled to keep his place in the United starting XI at the end of Mourinho’s reign – has scored three goals in his first three games into Solskjær’s tenure.
With United playing with a freedom they could only have dreamt of months ago, the all-time Belgian top scorer has praised Solskjær and his efforts in building a relationship with his players, especially with himself.
Speaking via the official Manchester United website, Lukaku said: “He talks to me all the time and I like that.
“He played in a way that I like to play, and also the rest of the team, and we are just enjoying our football right now.
“He’s taught me a lot. Movement-wise, and stuff like that, but obviously he knows the type of striker that I am. From the first day when I came back in, he did a total analysis of my game. I was really surprised but he helped me a lot and I am looking forward to keeping on working with him.
“He really wants me to face the goal because he knows that I am at my most dangerous when I do that, when I’m moving off the shoulder of the defender but also trying to stay on the move all the time.
“The work that we have been doing over the last couple of weeks is good, and I just take it every day at a time and I want to improve my game. He was ice cold when he was in front of the goal and that is something I like.”
One clinical striker helping another
Solskjær’s influence over Lukaku is clear to see.
The 25-year-old scored with his first touch against Newcastle United in their 2-0 win at St James’ Park and along with his attacking teammates such as Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial, has looked more lively, dangerous and free to play his natural game.
70′: Comes on vs Bournemouth
72′: Scores vs Bournemouth
63′: Comes on vs Newcastle
64′: Scores vs Newcastle
Romelu Lukaku has become Solskjaer’s Solskjaer. 😂 https://t.co/wTNWhk9KTq
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) January 2, 2019
Before Solskjaer’s arrival, Lukaku had scored just two in 10 Premier League matches but is now showcasing his true ability, which he admits is all he wants to do.
I just take it one day at a time,” he added. “I just want to work and help the team in every way that I can and right now everything is going well, not only for me but for the rest of the team as well and I am delighted.
I just keep working in training and in the games. I don’t want to regret it the next day. And right now everything is going well and now hopefully we can turn it up a notch and improve a bit more as a team like the manager wants us to play and that’s it.