Harry Maguire scores extra-time winner as Man Utd see off valiant Norwich to reach record-30th FA Cup semi-final
Last Updated: 27/06/20 10:40pm
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Manchester United’s progress to the FA Cup semi-finals is crucial for developing his squad’s winning mentality.
United had to dig deep against the Premier League’s bottom side as Odion Ighalo’s fifth goal in four starts for the club was cancelled out by Todd Cantwell’s strike from distance.
Timm Klose was sent off in the 89th minute for bringing down Ighalo, after which United found stubborn resistance from Tim Krul during extra-time, but the Norwich goalkeeper was beaten when Harry Maguire reacted quickest to direct the winner home in the 118th minute.
United became the first side to seal their spot in the last four and two wins at Wembley would secure their first trophy under Solskjaer.
“We’re in the semi-finals and we’re delighted with that,” Solskjaer said in his post-match press conference. “Last year we got to the quarter-finals and lost to Wolves. Now, at least, we are in the semi-finals at Wembley.
“It’s important for this team to win their first trophy or to get to their first final together. That will help the winning culture because we have to start winning things.”
United’s captain and match-winner Maguire earned a glowing assessment for his late heroics at Carrow Road.
Maguire was the subject of some fierce criticism from former Manchester United captain Roy Keane following last week’s 1-1 draw at Tottenham, but Solskjaer could not have been prouder of the centre-half’s display.
“Harry has been magnificent since he’s come to the club, his leadership skills are there to be seen, he helped us with the build-up,” Solskjaer added.
“Today, I think he won every single header and every challenge, so I’m very pleased with Harry.”
Maguire’s effort from close range at the death is his second goal in this season’s competition, with his first a 25-yard pile-driver against Tranmere in January.
The United boss added: “The two goals are two different goals and maybe two goals you don’t expect from him – one from 30 yards in the top corner and then a poacher’s goal.”
Ole salutes Ighalo influence
Solskjaer also had warm words for Ighalo, who continued his record of scoring at least once in every United game he’s started.
“Odion knows how much we value him in and around the dressing room and, of course, on the pitch,” Solskjaer said. “He’s a goalscorer and a poacher, he’s strong and we can play the ball into him like we did on the winning goal.
“He’s performing well and that also gives me the chance to rotate with Marcus [Rashford], Anthony [Martial] and Mason [Greenwood] so they can get a rest and be fresh for every game.”