As I brilliantly predicted in my previous article, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has now been named Manchester United’s permanent manager. The former United player has now fulfilled his dream of getting to manage the club he enjoyed many years of success with as a player. The Norwegian is one of a long line of managers to work at the helm of United since the departure of the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson. Solskjaer is the 5th manager to take over the red half of manchester since Sir Alex retired (David Moyes → Ryan Giggs (kinda) → Louis Van Gaal → Jose Mourinho → Ole Gunnar Solskjaer).
Since succeeding Jose Mourinho at the helm of United, Solskjaer has taken the club to new heights in the Premier League and Champions League. Manchester United. Propelling United back into the top 4 race in the league and defeating an almighty PSG side in the last 16 of the Champions League, Solskjaer has accumulated the best win ratio of any United manager ever. Albeit he has only managed 19 games, let’s still give the man some credit. In those 19 matches, Solskjaer has led United to victory in 14 of them, earning himself a 73.7% win percentage, bettering Sir Alex Ferguson’s 59.7%.
Few would have expected him to make the impact that he has since arriving at Old Trafford, but now it would have seemed insane to not offer him the full time gig. With a 3 year contract under his belt now with Manchester United, this is where the hard work begins.
After such a resurgence of form in all competitions (minus the FA Cup), the pressure is now beating down the neck of Solskjaer and the rest of Manchester United. Fans will want the good form to continue but to keep up a 73.7% win percentage is just simply unsustainable.
Solskjaer is the man to take United forward and have them competing again for the Premier League; however, he will only maintain that success if the fans are patient with the results that may begin to dip. As seen with the David Moyes era, United fans are not known for their patience in managers who aren’t particularly performing up to standard. But hey who knows, maybe he’ll even turn out better than Sir Alex Ferguson?
The players are a big fan of the manager and feel at home with his philosophy that allows them to play more freely, breaking away from the heavily defensive structure under Mourinho. As seen with Paul Pogba, who has registered 16 combined goals and assists in 17 games under Solskjaer, many players are reaping benefits of the new system. Rashford and Lukaku have both hit top form at the same time for the first time and there really is alot to hype this team up about.
This is certainly an exciting time for Manchester United fans, and with the summer transfer window approaching, Solskjaer will be given the opportunity to fill his squad with the players he thinks will fit his system well and with players he sees as the future of Manchester United.
For now, Manchester United face a major battle for a top 4 finish and a bid to the Champions League Semi-final via a very strong Barcelona team.
Go chat shit with Andrew on Twitter @DiefDorf.