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Onana decided to ´stand up and fight´ after Man Utd criticism

SoccerNews in FA Cup 24 May 2024

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Andre Onana says he decided to “stand up and fight” after a tough start to life at Manchester United.

The Red Devils are preparing to face Manchester City in the FA Cup final for a second consecutive season on Saturday after a poor campaign saw them finish in their lowest-ever league position in the Premier League.

Certain players were singled out throughout the season due to their performances, with Onana coming under fire for a string of errors early on after taking over from David de Gea when he joined from Inter last July.

However, the goalkeeper was adamant he did not let the criticism get to him.

“I arrived as the best goalkeeper in the world and ‘boom’ it went down. It was like ‘What happened?’,” he said.

“But that is how difficult football is sometimes. It depends if you want to stay down there or stand up and fight. I know what I did to arrive here. I know who I am. I decided to stand up and fight.”

Onana compared his experience to that of team-mate Marcus Rashford, who was left out of Gareth Southgate’s England squad for Euro 2024 after scoring just eight goals this season.

“We are talking about the same player [Rashford]. So now he’s a bad player? No. You can have a bad season or a bad start, but the most important thing is how you end,” he added.

“Rashy, for me, is one of the best players in the world. But he is facing difficulty. It’s not only him and me, but the whole club.

“But he will come back. I know my killer will score some important goals for us. Hopefully, against City, he will score two, and we win the FA Cup.”

There is also a lot of speculation around the club concerning the future of Erik ten Hag, with reports suggesting he could be relieved of his position no matter the result in Saturday’s final.

Onana, however, has thrown his support behind his manager, who he also worked with at Ajax for five years.

The Cameroon international said: “I’m not here to back him because he’s big enough to back himself, but he’s a really good guy, a positive coach and, tactically, he is good.

“If he had all his squad together, it would probably be different for him, for us, the club and the fans.”

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