Ole Gunnar Solskjaer described Manchester United’s 3-1 win over Brighton as “their best performance of the season”.
Midfielder Andreas Pereira and striker Marcus Rashford scored either side of a Davy Propper own goal to give United their biggest home Premier League triumph since August and move them into seventh place, their highest position for two months.
Rashford should have had another but inexplicably fired Daniel James’ cross wide of an open goal.
Brighton keeper Mat Ryan saved from James and Brazilian midfielder Fred, before denying what would have been a memorable solo effort from Anthony Martial.
Solskjaer added: “It was exhilarating and entertaining. How we didn’t end up with five, six or seven I don’t know.”
After their 3-0 win over Partizan Belgrade in the Europa League on Thursday, it was the first time United had scored six in two games since March and extended a run of five wins in six games in all competitions since a 1-1 draw with Liverpool.
“If we don’t get confidence from this, I don’t know what to tell them,” added Solskjaer.
Manchester United 3-1 Brighton: Ole Gunner Solskjaer praises ‘excellent’ Man United win
The victory came at a cost, though, as midfielder Scott McTominay had to be carried down the tunnel on a stretcher after falling awkwardly and will have a scan on his injured ankle on Monday.
It was a familiar story for Brighton, who have never won at Old Trafford and never looked like breaking that sequence and allowed Rashford to restore the hosts’ two-goal cushion two minutes after Lewis Dunk’s header had given them hope.