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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer tells David De Gea and Dean Henderson to prove they’re Man Utd No.1

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has told David De Gea and Dean Henderson they must slug it out for the right to be Manchester United’s No.1.

Henderson has started United’s last seven games, after first-choice keeper De Gea returned home to Spain to be present at the birth of his first child.

England keeper Henderson, who has started all of United’s Europa League games this season, is likely to continue away to Granada tomorrow in the first leg of the quarter-final tie.

And Solskjaer said he is happy for De Gea and Henderson to battle it out for the coveted No.1 position and has challenged both to prove themselves worthy of it.

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“Every time I try to explain to players why they don’t play in this particular game and what they need to do and what my plans are for them, all those discussions remain private,” said Solskjaer.

“David has been a top, top keeper and he still is. He’s working to be ready when he plays.

“If it’s Dean or David, I’m very comfortable with both of them to play and I’m very happy that none of them are happy not to play.

“When you’re a part of Manchester United, there are always going to be players coming in that don’t just come to fill the bench. Everyone has ambition to take your shirt.

“I was there myself as a striker. We signed Ruud van Nistelrooy, Diego Forlan, Louis Saha, loads of top strikers, Dwight Yorke and Teddy Sheringham.

“The aim for me then is to prove to the manager that ‘okay, I don’t mind you signing these, but I’m still important for you and I’m still going to give everything I can to play’.

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“It’s the same – right-back, left-back, centre-forward, goalkeeper. David has had 10 fantastic years and he’s had challengers. Of course they want to play.

“Sergio Romero probably played less games than he deserved, Dean has come in and given it his all because everyone wants that place in the team.

“David does as well and it’s a healthy competition. The nature of football and there are more quality goalkeeper departments, they are a very tight-knit group.

“They work together in prep, they have different gym sessions, individual sessions, they stay together more.

“Naturally, they create a bond and the spirit in the goalkeeping department has been top. But it’s a healthy competition. Both of them are important, all of then want to play.”

United have been boosted by the return of Marcus Rashford, who came off with an injury in Sunday’s 2-1 win over Brighton at Old Trafford.

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“Marcus is travelling and we have to make a decision tomorrow if he starts or is on the bench,” said Solskjaer. “I don’t think he’ll play the 90 minutes.

“Marcus is okay-ish. He’s trained this morning. He’s available to be selected, as I said, either as a sub or a starter.

“Juan [Mata] is back training as is Alex [Telles], so we’re looking stronger definitely. We didn’t lose anyone last weekend against Brighton.”

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