Manchester United has scrapped off plans for a training camp in the Gulf region in next month’s winter break amid tensions over security concerns.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer plans on giving his players a few days of before going away for a training camp. However, the destination has not yet been decided. Nonetheless, Qatar and Dubai would have been near the top of United’s list.
January last year, Solskjaer too his squad to Dubai in the United Araba. He sent some of his players there again in November during the international break.
Previously, United has as well used the Aspire Academy in Qatar’s capital, Doha for a winter training camp.
Of late, there has been a rise of tensions in the region after senior Iranian commander, Qasem Soleimani was killed in a US airstrike in Baghdad. A Ukrainian International Airlines plane was accidentally shot down in Tehran killing 176 passengers.
As a result, Solskjaer has decided to maintain his squad in Europe most likely in Spain or Portugal to prepare for the rest of their campaign.
When asked if United’s plans have changed, Solskjaer said, “Yes, there are things that worry me more than football.”
“We are looking at the Middle East but that is not going to happen. We will stay in Europe.”
Youngsters to form core going forward
United ranks fifth in the Premier league-27 points off Liverpool. Solskjaer said the aim is to be challenging for the title next season but he is “not saying it is a realistic one.”
“We are behind and a fair rate behind the top one now, who we play on Sunday. We will see where we are against them.” Said Solskjaer.
“But with a few signings, with the improvement these players are making, in the next couple of years, we want to do that.”
The Norwegian added that the performances of United’s young players showed the squad does not need a major overhaul.
“This is a group you can work with. They are going to give you everything. That is the core of what the team is going to be moving forward, for me.” He said.
“Of course, we are looking at a couple of signings and strengthening here and there. But the core group is there.”