During the game at Camp Nou Barça keeper Ter Stegen got his hands on a note that contained details of a tactical change for Solskjaer's United side.
Two days on since Manchester United went crashing out of the Champions League at the hands of Barcelona at Camp Nou, it has emerged that Barça goalkeeper Marc-André Ter Stegen managed to get his hands on one of the United coaching staff’s tactical notes during the game.
The incident was not initially picked up by the TV cameras nor by the crowd in attendance but footage released by Spanish TV network Gol has brought to light how a note hand-written by United deputy coach Kieran McKenna during the game ended up in the gloves of Ter Stegen.
From Solskjaer to Rashford to Ter Stegen
The footage, recorded during the second half of the game, shows Solskjaer passing the note to Marcus Rashford, which it emerged contained instructions on a tactical change of formation. The United striker initially shouts the orders at his team mates and then grips the note in his hand for several minutes until he eventually drops it on the floor after a collision with Gerard Pique just outside Barcelona’s box.
Ter Stegen is then seen picking up the note moments later before taking the time to read it. Gol also managed to get their hands on the note and published a picture of its contents, which shows the United team in a new 4-4-2 formation (as opposed to the 4-3-1-2 in which they started the game), with each of the eleven players' names written in their respective positions.
The tactical change however did little to help United’s cause as they eventually ran out 3-0 losers, after a first-half brace from Lionel Messi and a stunning strike by ex-Liverpool forward Philippe Coutinho in the 61st minute secured Barcelona's place in the semi-final.
Tough run ahead for United
Following their Champions League elimination at Camp Nou, Solskjaer’s men have a tricky trio of games coming up in the Premier League as they look to secure a Champions League top-four spot – with an away trip to Everton on Sunday, followed by home games against Manchester City and Chelsea next week.
The Red Devils currently sit in sixth place but are just two points off Arsenal (fourth) and Chelsea (fifth) and three points behind third-placed Spurs, as the battle for the last two Champions League spots heats up in the final stretch of the season.