Ole Gunnar Solskjaer tells stories about 1999 to inspire Manchester United, Chris Smalling reveals
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer reminds his Manchester United players of the dramatic Champions League final triumph in 1999 to inspire them, defender Chris Smalling has revealed.
Two stoppage time goals against Bayern Munich, including the winner from Solskjaer, saw the Red Devils complete one of the greatest comebacks in European football history at the Nou Camp 20 years ago.
And the Norwegian will return to Barcelona with United, this time as manager, as he attempts to overcome the odds once more and eliminate the irrepressible Spanish champions in the quarter-finals.
United set up the Barcelona clash with a miraculous comeback victory over Paris Saint-Germain in the previous round – and Smalling explains how the spirit of ’99 inspires the current squad.
The England international told talkSPORT: “The fact that he’s been there, done that and now he’s our manager… he’s able to share his insight in certain situations because ultimately that Champions League campaign [1998/99] had some blips along the way.
“Having what he’s gone through, for us, is a massive boost.
“He used it before PSG and before a couple of big games. That’s what we want to hear, we want to hear stories and he’s very good at telling things that he’s been through with Sir Alex [Ferguson] and as a player.
“To hear those is massive inspiration for all of us and helps lead to the comebacks that we’ve had.”
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The Red Devils welcome Barca to Old Trafford on Wednesday night following a run of three defeats in their last four games.
However, Smalling insists United will thrive off the big occasion.
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He added: “We don’t have it easy… PSG and then Barcelona. But ultimately, those are the games you dream of playing in when you’re a kid; you watch them on TV.
“Having that chance to go out there and do something that you love is something we’re all looking forward to.”
Source: SportsLatest TS