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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer excited by Shola Shoretire's potential

Shola Shoretire came on aged 17 years 23 days.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer tipped Shola Shoretire for a bright future after the 17-year-old came on against Real Sociedad and became Manchester Unitedโ€™s youngest-ever player in European competition.

Having secured a surprisingly comprehensive 4-0 win in last weekโ€™s first leg in Turin, the Red Devils knew progress from the round of 32 was all but assured heading into the return fixture at Old Trafford.

United and Sociedad played out a forgettable 0-0 draw in the second leg, but Thursdayโ€™s match will go down in the history books after Shoretireโ€™s record-breaking late introduction.

Having made his debut as a substitute in Sundayโ€™s league win against Newcastle, he replaced Norman Whiteside as the youngest player to represent United in European competition by coming on aged 17 years 23 days.

โ€œShola is going to be a good player for us and sometimes you need to test them against good players,โ€ Solskjaer said. โ€œWe knew Real Sociedad are a good team with good individuals and they press.

โ€œWe felt today Amad (Diallo) โ€“ he had to come on, of course, Dan (James) had to come off โ€“ and Shola, the two of them will need these little introductions to this type of level.

โ€œHeโ€™s a young kid that we believe in. Great attitude.

Manchester United v Real Sociedad โ€“ UEFA Europa League โ€“ Round of 32 โ€“ Second Leg โ€“ Old Trafford
Shola Shoretire made his European debut (Martin Rickett/PA)

โ€œYou can see the shape of him. We think physically heโ€™ll be an athlete and technically very, very good. Makes good decisions.

โ€œSo, of course weโ€™re going to gradually feed him into this team and, you know, heโ€™s grounded, got his feet firmly on the ground and he works really hard in training.

โ€œVery likeable boy that we hope we can see loads of in the future.โ€

It was a memorable moment towards the end of a largely forgettable second leg.

Sociedad skipper Mikel Oyarzabal missed an early penalty before stand-in United captain Bruno Fernandes hit the crossbar, with Modibo Sagnan hitting the woodwork shortly after half-time.

Substitute Axel Tuanzebe saw a headed winner ruled out due to a Victor Lindelof foul in the build-up as a strong United side were held 0-0 by a side they struck four past a week ago.

โ€œWe played against a very good team and, you know, the start of the game I think showed why it was important,โ€ Solskjaer said.

โ€œThey got a penalty early. Luckily he missed it because you donโ€™t want to go into half-time in the game one or two down.

Manchester United v Real Sociedad โ€“ UEFA Europa League โ€“ Round of 32 โ€“ Second Leg โ€“ Old Trafford
Mikel Oyarzabal missed a first-half penalty for Real Sociedad (Martin Rickett/PA)

โ€œOf course you want to get players through unscathed and I felt the first 10, 15 minutes we were a bit slow.

โ€œI thought we then we played some very good stuff in the first half.

โ€œSecond half not great with the ball but solid at the back, good defending and kept them away from our goal.

โ€œI think it just proves how good the performance was last week, the 4-0 win.โ€

While United look ahead to Fridayโ€™s Europa League last-16 draw, Sociedad return to domestic matters after a night that saw United academy graduate Adnan Januzaj line up at Old Trafford again.

โ€œWe did well,โ€ the Belgium international said. โ€œWe could have scored some goals.

โ€œIt was a better performance from us, but it wasnโ€™t to be and now we have to focus on other things.

โ€œWe had the penalty and maybe could have scored. Things could have been different. It was always going to be difficult. Now we need to move on.

โ€œItโ€™s great being back at Old Trafford. I will always remember playing here. Itโ€™s special for me.โ€

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