Solskjaer admits Fred was ‘lucky’ not to see red for a head butt but defends decision not to submit

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer admits Fred was ‘a bit lucky’ not to see any red for a header on PSG’s Leandro Paredes – but defends decision not to replace the Man United midfielder before he be sent off after a strong tackle against Ander Herrera

  • Manchester United star Fred dodged a red card for a header against PSG
  • The Brazilian midfielder appeared to have hit Paredes in the first half
  • However, after consulting the VAR, the referee only awarded a yellow card.
  • Fred was ultimately fired for a second bookable offense later in the game
  • United star Fred escapes red card for headbutt on PSG Paredes midfielder

Manchester United’s Champions League hopes are on the line following their home loss to a Neymar-inspired Paris Saint-Germain on a night Fred saw red.

The 3-1 defeat at Old Trafford means United will now travel to RB Leipzig next Tuesday with the top three teams in Group H with nine points heading into the final round of matches.

“We have to dust ourselves off and be ready for Leipzig,” manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said.

Fred received a second yellow card when he played the ball during a tackle on Ander Herrera

“We know our fate is in our hands. We play a good team but we are also developing to be a better team.

Solskjaer had to face questions over his decision to keep Fred on the pitch even though the Brazilian was fortunate enough to escape a red card for appearing to have hit Leandro Paredes in the head, and a second yellow for a tackle strong on Herrera.

Fred was finally sent off by Italian referee Daniele Orsato in the 70th minute when he was severely judged for fouling former teammate Ander Herrera.

Fred (not pictured) received a red card for a second bookable offense in the second half

Fred (not pictured) received a red card for a second bookable offense in the second half

Fred (not pictured) received a red card for a second bookable offense in the second half

“I thought he was a little lucky to stay when the referee decided to give him anything,” Solskjaer admitted.

“Fred shouldn’t put his head towards him. I don’t think he touched it but you don’t. He was a little lucky. It’s nothing or a red card.

“We talked about staying calm and keeping your feet up and the second yellow was far from a foul – and Ander knows that too.

“It wasn’t a fault. Fred played a really disciplined second half, but when he does a light tackle you can’t blame the boy.

Video replays showed Fred slamming PSG's Leandro Paredes head in Wednesday's clash

Video reruns showed Fred hitting PSG's Leandro Paredes head in Wednesday's clash

Video replays showed Fred slamming PSG’s Leandro Paredes head in Wednesday’s clash

Paredes falls grabbing his face, but Fred dodged a dismissal despite a VAR reference

Paredes falls grabbing his face, but Fred dodged a dismissal despite a VAR reference

Paredes falls while grabbing his face, but Fred dodged a kickoff despite a VAR reference

Asked if he regretted not making a substitution while Paul Pogba, Nemanja Matic and Donny van de Beek were on the bench, the United boss replied: “There was no reason to. its performance to remove it.

“He was lucky to stay in the first half, but that doesn’t affect the referee who made a mistake.

“I thought Fred was keeping his head exceptionally well in the second half. Looking back, having 11 men would have been better, but who can say?

Solskjaer refused to criticize Herrera but Paredes was guilty of going down too easily and there was more drama when he clashed with Scott McTominay.

The Brazilian was involved in an ongoing battle with the PSG midfielder in the first half

The Brazilian was involved in an ongoing battle with the PSG midfielder in the first half

The Brazilian was involved in an ongoing battle with the PSG midfielder in the first half

“Scott could have fallen when Neymar grabbed his soft parts, but I don’t want them too,” Solskjaer said.

“We have seen players at Old Trafford fall too easily when they are hit. United captain Harry Maguire sympathized with his teammate, saying: “It’s strange how he gave a yellow card [in the first half].

“It’s either a red card or nothing. It’s not a yellow card [in the second half]. He wins the ball. I was two meters away, the linesman was five meters away. Every time you go upstairs – especially in Europe – you get a reservation. The decision also puzzled PSG coach Thomas Tuchel.

“From the sideline, I got the impression he gave Paredes a head butt,” said the PSG boss.

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has refused to criticize PSG theaters

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has refused to criticize PSG theaters

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has refused to criticize PSG theaters

“So there was the confirmation with VAR and after that I was very surprised. For me there were only two choices: he didn’t touch it or he did and that’s a red card.

“I was a little afraid that we would lose our minds. I’m happy that we won and that we don’t have to discuss these decisions for too long. There was another blow for United when Marcus Rashford left with a recurrence of a shoulder injury.

“Let’s see how quickly he recovers,” Solskjaer said. “I hope he will be ready for the weekend but we don’t know.

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