Scott McTominay has urged his Manchester United team-mates to “keep the fire burning” by building on their first back-to-back victories under Erik ten Hag.
United tasted defeat in their opening two league matches – the first time that has happened since the 1992-93 season – before beating Liverpool 2-1 and Southampton 1-0.
Saturday’s slender victory at St Mary’s, secured through Bruno Fernandes’ second-half strike, ended a run of seven straight away league games without a win for United.
Having secured successive top-flight wins for the first time since February, McTominay is hoping to push on with games against Leicester City and Arsenal to come next week.
“Now was the time to get everyone together and bounce back from two tough games,” said McTominay, who has played the sixth-most minutes of any United outfielder this term.
“We need that fire inside of us and as soon as the fire goes out, we are in trouble.
“But we have to keep the fire burning together. We need to keep everyone together, and we might do well.”
Asked how United go about keeping the fire burning, McTominay added: “Team spirit is the most important thing.
“If we have good team spirit in the group then we will go far. If we don’t and people go easy on each other, then we won’t go far.”
United claimed the win at Southampton despite being slightly edged in terms of the expected goals (xG) return – 1.4 compared to 1.5 for the Saints, who also had more shots.
And with two more important matches to come over the next week, before United’s Europa League campaign gets under way, McTominay acknowledged improvement is needed.
“We need to be calm because we have big games coming up,” he said. “We didn’t play as well as we could have done against Southampton and they had a lot of the ball.
“But we need to make sure that whatever we do coming up to the next games we are dominating and scoring the goals.”
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