Caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says he is not solely focused on “attacking football” after Manchester United scored their 12th goal in three games in a scintillating victory over Bournemouth.
A cavalier display in the first half at Old Trafford saw United score three times, with Paul Pogba netting his second double in successive matches and Marcus Rashford grabbing the other.
Solskjaer’s side conceded their third goal in as many games when Nathan Ake headed in before substitute Romelu Lukaku fired home a fourth.
United, in sixth, are now only three points behind fifth-placed Arsenal, having trailed by eight following the morale-sapping 3-1 defeat at Liverpool earlier this month.
“Everyone thinks I’m looking for attacking football all the time,” said Solskjaer.
“But the foundation is how you defend – keep a clean sheet and you have a decent chance to win a game of football.
“Training sessions have been high quality. The tempo and sharpness has been really good, but we will get better and we are working towards a clean sheet.”
Pogba poked in his first after Rashford had mesmerised both Ake and Diego Rico on the right, before the French World Cup winner headed in from Ander Herrera’s precise delivery.
It was 3-0 when Anthony Martial, back in the XI after recovering from a bug, provided a wonderful cross for Rashford to slide his shot past Asmir Begovic.
Bournemouth, who had looked dangerous on set-pieces, pulled a goal back in first-half stoppage-time when Ake headed in following good work by David Brooks.
Lukaku scored United’s fourth from Pogba’s pass two minutes after coming on, before defender Eric Bailly was shown a straight red card for scything down Cherries midfielder Ryan Fraser.
This victory means Solskjaer has emulated Sir Matt Busby and Jose Mourinho by winning his first three league games in charge.
The Norwegian will be looking to make it four at Newcastle on Wednesday, while Bournemouth remain 12th in the Premier League.