Ole Gunnar Solskjaer insists ‘squeaky bum time’ holds no fear for him and his Manchester United players.
Former United manager Sir Alex Ferguson coined the infamous phrase to describe the intense feeling of pressure as the season builds to a climax.
United host West Ham knowing a win will put them three points clear of top-four rivals Leicester, before the two sides meet on Sunday, the final day of the season.
Victory at Old Trafford will put United in pole position to secure a Champions League place for next season, with Solskajer confident his players have the nerve to get the job done.
Asked if he felt his players have the mentality to clinch a top-four place, Solskjaer said: “I do. We’ve given ourselves a great chance and it is, as you say, squeaky bum time.
“I’m looking forward to it and I’m pretty sure the players are as well. We’ve given ourselves a very good chance with a great run.
“You can talk about it all the way back to October and that international break, when we came back and should have won against Liverpool.
“From then on, we’ve been a very good team and more consistent.
“There’s two games left now and we’ve been playing non-stop since the restart.
“We’ve enjoyed it, most of the players have had a chance and most of them have done well. I’m very happy with the squad.
“It’s just that feeling of we’ve got great momentum when we’ve played and we didn’t get any injuries, so we’ve played more or less the same team and they’ve performed really well.
“But as a club we’re always looking at promoting kids and adding players that are better than our squad anyway. But let’s just focus on these next two games first.”
United have made huge progress under Solskjaer this season, his first full campaign in charge, despite their 19-match unbeaten run in all competitions coming to an end in Sunday’s FA Cup semi-final defeat by Chelsea.
Solskjaer knows the next step in United’s development is returning to the Champions League, despite his claim the club can attract players without the lure of playing at the highest level in Europe.
“You always want to be a part of the best tournaments and teams,” said Solskjaer. “But then again Manchester United is attractive enough.
“Everyone can see now we’re on a journey towards something better – I think so, anyway.
“It’s in our own hands. I don’t want to talk about how much it’ll mean financially to attract people, we just have to focus on these next two games and make sure we’re there.
“If we can get through the next two games unbeaten, that’s the Champions League for next year.”
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