The rise of Ole Gunnar Solskjær
Manchester United club legend Ole Gunnar Solskjær was hired merely as an interim manager but following a string of good results Ed Woodward and the board decided that the Norwegian is the man for the job full time.
Since Sir Alex Ferguson retired United has had a string of relatively unsuccessful managers. First they had David Moyes who was fired after only 10 months after leading United to seventh place in the Premier League.
They then hired Louis van Gaal but after two seasons where United only picked up the FA Cup, he was also fired. Most recently Jose Mourinho took the reigns as manager. His first season was a good one, he won the English League Cup as well the Europa League and most significantly United ended second in the league.
However, Mourinho’s side struggled at the beginning of 2018-19 season, they were not winning matches, star players like Paul Pogba, Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford were not performing and worst of all the football itself was seen as boring.
None of this was helped by Mourinho’s combative man-management style. He was fired in December and United brought in Ole as interim manager while they looked for a more permanent solution.
Since coming in as interim manager there has a visible shift at United. In his 19 matches in charge Ole has taken United from eighth and 11 points behind fourth place Chelsea to fifth and 3 points off third place Tottenham.
He won his first 8 matches in a row. At the time of writing his United side had all but 2 draws and 2 defeats in all competitions. This is no mean feat especially considering the dysfunctionality at Old Trafford when he took the job.
Ole is getting the best out of his players. He has relieved world cup winner Paul Pogba of much of the defensive work that saw him stifled under Mourinho, allowing him more control of the midfield and ability to create chances for others.
By far his most impressive accomplishment as United’s manager is overturning Paris Saint-Germain in the UEFA league. Ole’s men went into the second leg of the tie 2-0 down but won 3-1 due to away goals at Le Parc des Princes using a very young squad.
This historical victory confirmed many things. It confirmed that United are indeed improving as a side, that the Red Devils still have amazing youth players and most importantly for the fans, that Ole is the man for the permanent job. They were proven right when United made it official on the 28th of March.
United are still far away from where they want to be but if Ole keeps this form up and signs the players he needs, especially in the centre back positions, they will be well on their way back to pinnacle of European football.
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