Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says winning silverware is Manchester United’s ‘ultimate challenge’ following the club’s semi-final struggles over the past year.
Manchester United host West Ham in the FA Cup fifth round tomorrow as they look to progress to the latter stages once more, the Red Devils having reached the semi-finals of last season’s competition before defeat to Chelsea at Wembley.
That loss was one of four semi-final defeats the club have suffered over the past year, also losing in the last four of last season’s Europa League and in the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup in each of the past two campaigns.
United are yet to win major silverware under Solskjaer’s management but have shown signs of progress this season, sitting second in the Premier League and just five points behind league leaders Manchester City.
Focus will now turn to tomorrow’s cup clash against the in-form Hammers and Solskjaer has urged his side to overcome their recent disappointments as they bid to bring long-awaited silverware to Old Trafford.
“A trophy is always what you’re aiming for. You want to win every single competition – FA Cup, Europa League, every game you play in the Premier League,” said the Norweigian at his pre-match press conference.
“So, that’s the ultimate challenge and a test for a team – to go all the way.
“We’ve improved, we’ve had a plan in place and I think the team is getting better and better.
“Last season semi-final, disappointing to lose that one and you want to go all the way and lift a trophy. [But] that’s not the be all and end all – that’s the bread and butter in the Premier League – but it’s also a measure of how good a team is.
“To get to a final sometimes you’re lucky with the draw, but to win a final all the good teams have been beaten so that’s the next step for us in the development of this team.”