The teenager is competing to start against Southampton on Saturday (Picture: Getty)

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says he ‘trusts’ Mason Greenwood and believes the Manchester United youngster is ready to play a first-team role as he pushes to start in the absence of Anthony Martial.

The Frenchman – who has netted twice already in the Premier League – will miss Saturday lunchtime’s trip to Southampton with a thigh injury.

With Alexis Sanchez also unavailable after moving to Inter Milan on a season-long loan, Greenwood will be expected to play a bigger role this season, especially while Martial is sidelined.

Martial will not be back to full fitness until after the international break (Picture: Getty)

The 17-year-old started the final game of last season and has come off the bench in each of United’s first three matches of the new campaign, and Solskjaer feels he is ready to be called upon if required.

‘Mason is not used to playing as little as he is at the moment,’ said Solskjaer at his pre-match press conference on Friday morning when asked if it’s a big ask for Greenwood to step up.

‘He is used to playing every week for the reserves or the Under-18s, now he’s coming on for half-an-hour here and there.

‘He’s not expected to play five games in a row of course, he’s cover and an option behind Anthony and Marcus.’

With Sanchez having joined Inter, Greenwood is now United’s third-choice attacker and can expect to see considerable game time particularly with the club competing in the Europa League.

Solskjaer continued: ‘I’m trusting Marcus, Anthony and Mason to be our centre forwards.

Solskjaer says Greenwood will act as cover for Martial and Rashford this season (Picture: Getty)

‘We’ve got loads of options and for me it is time for our boys to feel the pressure. It is something which we are looking forward to.’

Luke Shaw also misses the trip to his old club Southampton, while Solskjaer confirmed that deals are being worked on for both Chris Smalling and Matteo Darmian to leave United before the foreign transfer window closes.





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