Chris Smalling, who may captain Manchester United in our Europa League game against Liverpool, has claimed he’s looking to dominate the opposite at Anfield. He wants to get in an early challenge on their strikers to show them who is boss.
United have won all four of the games they have played against Liverpool since Van Gaal joined the club.
I think, quite often, the first 20 minutes can be quite frantic. But you want to get the upper hand on your opponent, whoever you’re playing against. For me, for example, it’s the striker. Very early on, you want to get an early challenge in and make sure you dominate.
These are games the players look forward to and it’s one I’m certainly looking forward to playing in.
It’s good that the manager sees it from a tactical viewpoint and we work on the training pitch before the game on our tactics so we don’t get caught up in the occasion. But when you cross over that white line, I think the emotion can drive you on and hopefully bring out a better performance.