Sol­sk­jaer crit­i­cises as­sis­tant ref­eree

The Daily Telegraph - Sport - - Premier League - By Ian Whit­tell at Old Traf­ford

Ole Gun­nar Sol­sk­jaer blamed as­sis­tant ref­eree Scott Ledger for his part in Arse­nal’s equal­is­ing goal as Manch­ester United made their worst start to a sea­son in 30 years.

The 1-1 draw came about when Pierre-em­er­ick Aubameyang equalised for Arse­nal with a goal that ref­eree Kevin Friend first dis­al­lowed, on his lines­man’s flag, be­fore VAR showed the Arse­nal striker was clearly on­side.

Sol­sk­jaer said: “Ash­ley Young cer­tainly holds his hand up be­cause he looked straight at the lines­man, maybe he hes­i­tated a bit and maybe he could have got a block in. That’s no con­so­la­tion for us and it was a per­fectly good goal for them.

“He made an im­pact on the sit­u­a­tion by rais­ing his flag. When it is that way, he could wait and take it later but that’s up to the ref.

“A lot of the penalty de­ci­sions, if you don’t make it, you can’t re­ally go back and have it. But it’s a work in progress and they def­i­nitely de­served their goal to­day.”

Sol­sk­jaer also rightly pointed out his side might have had a penalty for a sec­ond-half hand­ball by Sead Ko­lasinac but United keeper David de Gea ad­mit­ted that United will not be a fac­tor in the race for Cham­pi­ons League foot­ball if they fail to win such games.

De Gea said: “We were play­ing at Old Traf­ford and we have to win these games.”

Arse­nal man­ager Unai Emery be­lieved a draw was a fair re­sult and praised 18-year-old Bukayo Saka’s per­for­mance as the striker be­came the youngest player to ap­pear in the fix­ture in the Pre­mier League era.

Emery said: “He’s im­prov­ing and he’s help­ing us now as an im­por­tant player and we’re go­ing to go with him.

“It was a fair re­sult for both teams and it could be a good point for us if we win on Satur­day against Bournemout­h at home.”

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