AMAZING PEA SHOOT
Hernandez a United super sub in Solskjaer mould
MANCHESTER UNITED striker Javier Hernandez does not know if it is luck or judgment which has made him the new Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
Despite being at the Premier League champions for less than two years, Hernandez has already secured joint second spot alongside long-serving Ryan Giggs among the club’s topscoring substitutes.
The Mexican netted his 10th goal off the bench earlier this month as United grabbed that thrilling 3-3 comeback draw at Chelsea.
Only Solskjaer has more, with 28 of the Norwegian’s 126 United goals being scored as a substitute.
Sir Alex Ferguson always felt one of Solskjaer’s main strengths was the intense way he watched a match from the bench, which ensured he was fully prepared to take advantage of any defensive frailty when he came on.
Hernandez appears to share that trait, although he does not know why he has been so successful.
“I don’t have the answer to what makes me effective as a substitute,” he said.
“In football you can always come up with a reason for anything. Perhaps it is nothing more than having a little bit of luck.
“I just know if I play one minute, or 10, or 90, I try to play the same way. My mind is always to do my best and help my team.”
Rather than get bogged down analysing parts of the game he cannot control, Hernandez concentrates on the fundamentals.
“The only thing I can change is my attitude. I can do everything I want with that,” said the 23-year-old.
“There are parts of the game I cannot do anything about. But I can ensure my attitude.”
Chicharito’s goal against Ajax in last week’s Europa League last-32 clash means “Little Pea” has now scored on his last three appearances.
His season’s tally of nine, level with Danny Welbeck and Dimitar Berbatov, is not bad considering the amount of time he has been missing through injury.
Yet Ferguson appreciates that Hernandez will not be knocking on his door demanding to know why he still can’t get a starting spot.
“I don’t care if I am on the bench,” said Chicharito.
“Last year I was on the bench for a long time. I still got into the team at the end of the season.
“Every player in every team wants to play as many minutes as possible. It is the gaffer who has the answers.
“Sometimes football is going to give you good things. Sometimes it won’t.
“I just want to enjoy it because I am living a dream to play for Manchester United.”
SUB HERO: Hernandez scores United’s equaliser against Chelsea and sinks to his knees (inset) in celebration INTENSE: Solskjaer