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Last Updated: Sunday, 7 January 2007, 18:24 GMT
Ferguson hails goalscorer Larsson
Scorers Henrik Larsson (left) and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
One scorer for another: Larsson (left) makes way for Solskjaer
Sir Alex Ferguson was delighted with Henrik Larsson after the Swede scored on his Manchester United debut to help beat Aston Villa 2-1 in the FA Cup.

The United boss said: "He could have scored two or three. With his movement and experience, he was terrific. The goal summed him up, no drawback.

"Henrik has scored goals throughout his career and some of them have been crucial. Eric Cantona was like that.

"We created a lot of chances and some of our football was terrific."

Villa boss Martin O'Neill knows all about Larsson's ability, having had him in his side when he was manager at Celtic.

And he was generous with his praise of the striker, despite being disappointed by the defeat.

I thought we were heading for a replay but we deserved the victory

Alex Ferguson

"Henrik is always capable of scoring a goal like that," stated O'Neill.

"People said he would only score goals in Scotland and I never thought for one minute he wouldn't score in any league he chose. He has gone on to show that."

O'Neill thought his side were heading for a replay after his decision to replace Juan Pablo Angel with Milan Baros paid off when the Czech striker equalised.

"We played our best football when we went behind and Milan took the goal splendidly, added O'Neill.

"He has come on and shown his ability - the Milan Baros we know. Hopefully that will give his confidence a big boost.


"I am very disappointed at the result but United are always capable of scoring."

United's winner owed a lot to a goalkeeping error from on-loan stopper Gabor Kiraly, who played in place of the injured Thomas Sorensen.

However, O'Neill refused to blame Kiraly, saying: "I am grateful to Gabor coming down from Crystal Palace as we were down on numbers.

"He was feeling pretty good at half-time, he had made a good save. He is pretty downcast but that is the way it goes."

Ferguson, meanwhile, paid tribute to substitute Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who hit the shot that wriggled under Kiraly to settle the tie.

"That's his ninth of the season. We took off one good finisher and put another one on," he said.

"I thought we were heading for a replay but we deserved the victory."

Man Utd 2-1 Aston Villa
07 Jan 07 |  FA Cup


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