Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has continued his recent ‘feud’ with Tottenham Hotspur boss Jose Mourinho, while also calling out for a fresh look at the troublesome new handball rule.
The Norwegian initially made a comment during his post-match interview following Manchester United’s exhilarating stoppage time victory over Brighton, the former United forward – after the Red Devils had been saved on five occasions by the woodwork – making light of that fact that Mourinho had measured the goalposts before Spurs’ Europa League clash with Fk Shkendija on Thursday.
Never one to shy away from a public spat, Mourinho then bit back after Spurs’ controversial draw with Newcastle on Sunday, the former Real Madrid boss taking a shot at United’s recent penalty record and suggesting that his counterpart would prefer a ’22-yard box’ to the standard 18-yard dimensions.
After being asked about United progressing in the Carabao Cup, Solskjaer has since hit back, aiming a not so subtle dig at the man who he replaced in the Old Trafford dugout, the 47-year-old indirectly referencing how Mourinho’s side didn’t have to play to reach the fourth round, courtesy of their European exploits and then a controversial bye, following Leyton Orient’s inability to field a side due to positive coronavirus tests at the club.
“It depends how you want to get there,” Solskjaer said at his pre-match press conference ahead of his sides fourth-round clash with Brighton.
“You’ve got teams getting there, even without playing, even to this round!”
It was not only cheeky digs on the agenda for the United boss, however, as he also spoke out against the need for ‘clarity’ regarding the new handball rule, having seen his side, as well as many others, fall foul of the changes – Victor Lindelof harshly penalised in his side’s defeat to Crystal Palace in their opening Premier League fixture.
“You can discuss it all day long, but we need some clarity on what’s a foul and what’s a penalty,” said Solskjaer.
“Now it looks like you can chip a ball up into someone’s hand, like what happened to us against Crystal Palace, and Victor Lindelof got a penalty against him.
“Then the header against Tottenham, he [Eric Dier] has got no idea the ball hits him. You see the goals scored against West Brom at the end, is that not handball?
“We need to get that clarity. It’s a whole spectrum of things that aren’t normal.
“There have been so many changes and nuances to different rules. Back in the old days it seemed simpler.”
Mourinho’s Spurs beat Chelsea tonight on penalties to progress to the fifth round of the Carabao Cup, and the feuding bosses will come face-to-face when their sides meet in a mouthwatering clash at Old Trafford next Sunday.