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23-Sep-2020, 03:14 pm

'Greenwood can become a No.9, but must learn how to head the ball' - Man Utd star needs to improve aerial game, says Solskjaer

Mason Greenwood Manchester United 2020

Mason Greenwood is capable of becoming a No.9 but must first "learn how to head the ball", according to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who has challenged the Manchester United star to improve his aerial game.

The 18-year-old hit 17 goals across all competitions to help United earn a third-place Premier League finish and reach three semi-finals, while forming one-third of a deadly attacking trio alongside Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial.

He impressed enough to earn a maiden call up to England's national team, and was handed his first cap during a 1-0 win away at Iceland at the start of the month.

Greenwood notched his first goal of the new club season in a 3-0 EFL Cup third-round victory over Luton Town, while also grabbing an assist after coming on as a late substitute.

The teenager has been primarily deployed on the right wing since breaking into Solskjaer's line up, but the Red Devils boss expects him to take up a role through the middle as his career progresses.

“He had a fantastic season last season,” Solskjaer said of Greenwood after the win at Kenilworth Road. “And to get his goal now was important for him. And Marcus. It always is with strikers, to get that confidence and feeling of scoring, to get that hunger again.

"So I'm very happy with that, he just needs to work to get his fitness and sharpness back as well, like the rest of us.

“He can play through the middle as well. I think, as a young boy, not physically grown yet, it is nice to be facing forward rather than being the No.9, the foil; being the battering ram if you like.

“So I think he’ll end up as a No.9 in the end, probably. But he’s so good with his right and left, so he can come in off his right and left, or through the middle. I scored most of my goals from just outside the post as well, I wasn’t in the middle."

However, Solskjaer warned that the England international will have to work on one key area of his game in order to start leading the line for United, as he added: “For him to be a No.9, he needs to learn how to head the ball.

"I keep telling him that and, if he wants to do that, he’s welcome to come and practice with me.”

Greenwood's next chance to shine will likely come when the Red Devils take in a trip to Brighton on Saturday, where they will be looking to bounce back from a surprise defeat to Crystal Palace in their Premier League opener.

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