Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has admitted he was taken aback as Red Devils left-back Luke Shaw opened the scoring for England in their Euro 2020 final defeat to Italy on Sunday.
Shaw had a superb tournament for England and was unlucky to be on the losing side after hitting a fine volley inside just two minutes at Wembley, only for Italy to equalise later in the game and then win the penalty shoot-out after extra time.
Solskjaer will no doubt have enjoyed seeing Shaw performing so well for his country, with Man Utd fans knowing all to well what he’s capable of after his stunning performances at Old Trafford last season.
It was clearly a big moment for Solskjaer as he saw Shaw find the back of the net as he revealed his response to the goal.
“I’m so happy for Luke. I was watching it and ‘what’s just happened?’” Solskjaer is quoted by the Metro.
“He started the attack and we’ve encouraged him to get into the last third.
“We know how technically gifted he is and skilful he is and he hit the ball very, very sweetly. He keeps his eye on the ball, straight laces and it’s margins again – off the post and in, not off the post and out.
“That’s football for you. Luke deserves all the luck he can get. He’s had a tremendous couple of years with us.”
It’s surreal to think that United signed Alex Telles just last summer, putting Shaw’s future into some doubt at that time.
In reality, the former Southampton man has never looked more indispensable for his club after responding to Telles’ arrival with some of the best form of his career, making the left-back spot his own at United and winning back his England place.
Speaking to CaughtOffside yesterday, former United ace Luke Chadwick also praised Shaw, saying: “I think Shaw’s form can give him huge confidence, he continued his superb club form in the tournament. He can hopefully keep on taking that into his football at United.
“He’s in a brilliant place, everyone’s singing his praises. Outside of Man United, some people were thinking about who would be the left-back, with Chilwell and Trippier also there as options, but he’s made himself the clear first choice. And what a feeling it must’ve been for him to score in the final in front of 60,000 fans.
“He’s riding the crest of a wave. Players thrive off confidence and I don’t think there’ll be anyone more confident going into the new season.”