(Reuters) - Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said on Tuesday that new signing Donny van de Beek needed time to settle and would play a big part in the club’s season.
United signed the 23-year-old Dutch midfielder from Ajax Amsterdam for a reported 35 million pounds ($46 million) last month, but he has yet to feature in the starting lineup in either the Premier League or Champions League.
“Donny is going to play a big, big part this year,” Solskjaer told reporters ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League home game against Germany’s RB Leipzig. “When players come into a new team, a new league, they always need time to adapt.
“When Donny has played, he’s played really well. It says a lot about our depth of quality in the squad that we don’t have to use him every game.”
Van de Beek has made four substitute appearances in the Premier League, where he has scored one goal, and one in the Champions League so far.
Solskjaer’s decision not to field the youngster in Saturday’s goalless Premier League draw against Chelsea drew criticism from some quarters.
“It’s nice for some players and commentators to have a little go, but you have to know that you don’t have to start the first three games to be a very important player in the squad,” the manager added. “He’s going to be important, don’t worry about that.”
United kicked off their European campaign with an impressive 2-1 away win against last season’s runners-up Paris St Germain and Solskjaer said his team were keen to build on that performance.
“We look at every single game as a chance to get three points,” the 47-year-old added. “In the group stage of four teams, you’d think 10 points will get you through. Our aim is to get to 10 points as quick as we can.”
($1 = 0.7673 pounds)
Reporting by Manasi Pathak in Chennai; Editing by Hugh Lawson
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.