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Facundo Pellistri backs up Solskjaer’s words with latest Man Utd display

Summer signing Facundo Pellistri showed signs that he is further acclimatising to life at Manchester United on Friday night with his first goal for the club as the Under-23s defeated Southampton.

The Uruguayan teenager had been name-checked by first-team boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on Friday afternoon as he spoke to the media ahead of the weekend clash with West Ham.

Asked about the 18 year-old, who has been training with the first team but is yet to make his senior bow, the United boss said: “Facundo has come in, trained with the first-team and done well.

“We felt now is time for him to get game time.

“And he’s played a couple of games in the reserves and is gradually settled in nicely and getting more used to us.”

Hours later, Pellistri proved his managers words right in a 3-1 win for United’s U23s over their Saints counterparts.

Facundo Pellistri in action vs Southampton

United led 1-0 at the break on a brisk night at Leigh Sports Village thanks to a first-half effort from Swedish winger Anthony Elanga.

And within 30 seconds of the restart, Pellistri doubled the home side’s advantage.

The former Penarol kid combined with Shola Shoretire, who produced an outstanding pirouette midway inside his own half before returning the through pass, before racing through and coolly finishing with his right foot.

After Michael Obafemi had reduced the arrears, Pellistri almost notched his second, hitting the crossbar, before Arnau Puigmal made the result safe in stoppage time.

Somehow Pellistri missed this one

Pellistri has been included in two Champions League squads so far since moving to United, but didn’t come off the bench against either PSG or Istanbul Basaksehir.

And while some viewed Solskjaer’s words on Friday as a hint that he would soon be making his first-team bow, it was more of a ‘keep going young man’, as United carefully monitor his progress, not wanting to throw him into senior affairs too soon.

Certainly, with Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Mason Greenwood, Juan Mata, Dan James and Jesse Lingard all ahead of him in the battle for wide attacking roles, there’s no need to rush.

But Solskjaer and United staff will doubtless be delighted with his latest step in English football.

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