Man Utd: Mason Greenwood's finishing similar to Robin van Persie's - Solskjaer

By Simon StoneBBC Sport
Mason Greenwood
Greenwood stepped inside from a Marcus Rashford pass, beating a defender before cutting a shot back, underneath Partizan goalkeeper Vladimir Stojkovic, to score in United's 3-0 win

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Mason Greenwood's finishing resembles that of former United striker Robin van Persie.

Greenwood scored his third first-team goal in Thursday's 3-0 Europa League victory over Partizan Belgrade.

"Definitely," said Solskjaer, asked about the Van Persie comparison. "He is very composed with his finishing.

"What he does is natural to him. I don't think he knows whether his right or left foot is the best."

The Partizan game was Greenwood's fourth start this season, but his first since 3 October. In that time he has dropped down to the reserves, playing and scoring a later winner for the under-23s in the EFL Trophy against Doncaster.

He is yet to start in the Premier League this season, but has played in 12 of United's 17 games this campaign.

That number is more than Solskjaer intended, but has been forced on him by Anthony Martial's eight-game absence with a thigh injury.

"Mason is going to have a very big career, but sometimes it is not the right time to play him," Solskjaer said.

"He knows why he hasn't played as much. We're taking our time with him.

"He's gone up from the under-18s last year, now he's training with the first team every day and you can't just turn that switch on and off. You've got to perform every day if you are going to be accepted by a group like this.

"If he'd really stamped his authority in training every single day and been the best option he would have played every game, but as a young boy you expect ups and downs, and he's had some downs. But I think he is on his way up again."

Solskjaer says it was right to let experienced pair Romelu Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez leave for Inter Milan to guarantee Greenwood more chances this season, even if the full benefit may not be felt for several years.

"It is the club's philosophy - and mine - to give young players with the right attitude a chance," said Solskjaer.

"Mason is going to have a big career but if it takes a couple of years for him to really come through, it is worth it for us."

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