Ole Gunnar Solskjaer insists he has “loads of respect” for Roma despite his comments which led their fans to believe the opposite.
Roma fans putting posters of Solskjaer up near their training ground accusing the Norwegian of disrespecting their club with comments made after the quarter-final win against Granada.
Solskjaer is pictured alongside the quote “I don’t know them and I haven’t seen them play”, with the Giallorossi fans adding the caption “make sure he remembers us!”
“That was straight after the game and with all the games we’ve had I was just relieved that we’d gone through,” the United boss said.
“Of course I’ve watched them but I hadn’t analysed and hadn’t seen them in depth to give them enough respect probably with analysis.
“I could’ve said, which I truly mean, ‘it’s a fantastic club with a great history’.
“I’ve actually got two prized possessions back home – a (Francesco) Totti shirt and a (Daniele) De Rossi shirt that I’ve swapped with them, actually signed.
“I know about the history, I know about the quality.
“Of course with Chris (Smalling) being there last season, we followed them and then they signed Chris.
“We’d not watched them (play a match) but of course we’ve analysed them down to the ground since we drew them and we are ready for them.
“It was not meant as any disrespect and I think everyone knows that. I’ve got loads of respect for them.”
Solskjaer is hoping to end United’s semi-final hoodoo against the Serie A side.
Having lost in the final four of last season’s Carabao Cup, FA Cup and Europa League, the Red Devils lost at the same stage of this season’s Carabao Cup and are looking to make it fifth time lucky.
“It will be a dream come true the day I can lift a trophy for this club as a manager, of course,” Solskjaer said.
“That’s what we’re building for. We’ve been close, we’re building step by step, but take the next step it’s ifs and buts and this and that. You always talk about that.
“But for this team and myself, our ambition this season is to finish with lifting a trophy and being able to celebrate. I know how much that can mean for a group moving forward.”