If you have been following the footballing world, you’ve probably wondered why Manchester United sacked Ole Gunnar Solskjae. After all, the Italian had a better resume and was a more suitable replacement. Then, you’ve probably wondered why he was sacked in November. And if he was the right choice for the job, why wasn’t he sacked sooner? Let’s take a look at the reasons.
Antonio Conte was the better candidate to replace Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
There has been a lot of speculation about who would be the best candidate to take over from Ole Gunnar Solskjaers at Manchester United. Although the Norwegian has done a good job in the Premier League, his side have been inconsistent in Europe. They are currently eight points behind Premier League leaders Chelsea and have lost two of their last three games. They also failed to win any of their last four games in Europe, but late goals from Cristiano Ronaldo have saved them from relegation.
The Italian is a highly experienced manager who won multiple leagues with Juventus, Chelsea and Inter. He also won the FA Cup twice with Chelsea and ended Inter’s 11-year title wait. While some people may be suspicious of the temperament of a former Inter manager, many believe that Conte’s past success with Chelsea is enough to make him a better choice for the Manchester United job.
He had a better resume
Until recently, it was not clear whether Ole Gunnar Solskjaers’ job was safe. Three defeats and no silverware under his belt made his position look increasingly untenable. A recent FA Cup final loss to Liverpool and a defeat at West Ham in the Premier League have raised doubts over the Norwegian’s tactics. He has also failed to win any silverware in two full seasons. His most recent title – a Europa League final penalty shootout loss to Villarreal – was also not his best. Despite his good performance, he has failed to end United’s trophy drought.
Manchester United’s recent poor form has made it hard to be positive about the Norwegian’s chances of succeeding Sir Alex Ferguson. It is difficult to see Solskjaer as the answer to the current managerial dilemma. Old Trafford executives must accept that Solskjaer did not live up to the high expectations that they had for him. Richard Arnold, Ed Woodward, and Michael Appleton will have to live with their decisions.
Despite the poor record, Manchester United are still the best-supported club in the world, and it is unlikely they will choose someone else to replace Solskjaer. However, the club are already 12 points behind Chelsea, which means another season without a trophy is effectively sealed. If the club do make a change, Solskjaer’s legacy will be forever altered.
After signing a three-year contract in July, the Norwegian has made a number of controversial decisions. He reportedly locked his players in the dressing room for 45 minutes following a Leicester City defeat. The manager then demanded a reaction against Atalanta just four days later. The Italians were 2-0 down inside 30 minutes, but Solskjaer subsequently scored three goals in the second half to win the match.
He was sacked in November
The sacked manager of Manchester United, Ole Gunnar Solskjaers, was expected to be sacked following a 4-1 defeat to Watford. However, the Norwegian had led United to a poor start to the 2021-22 season. The team suffered defeats at home to Liverpool and at Old Trafford to Manchester City, before they were beaten 2-0 by the Citizens. Solskjaer was replaced by Jose Mourinho.
The sacked manager was given a three-year contract and was widely admired by United fans. Despite the poor start to the current campaign, Solskjaer had plenty of support at Old Trafford. The club regularly backed him with high-profile signings like Harry Maguire and Aaron Wan-Bissaka. In the run-up to Solskjaer’s sacking, the club signed several high-profile players.
Despite the high expectations, the Norwegian manager had a mixed relationship with his fans. Despite a long and successful playing career, Solskjaer failed to lead Manchester United into the top four. In his first season, he managed United to a third-place finish. His second season saw United finish in the second spot, but that was not enough. The Norwegian also failed to deliver silverware during his time at the club. The best United could muster during Solskjaer’s tenure was the defeat to Villarreal on penalties in the Europa League final.
Mauricio Pochettino is the preferred candidate to succeed Solskjaer as manager. But that’s unlikely to happen until January. The United players’ reaction on social media was a testament to the dismal season of Solskjaer. After the Watford defeat, the club board convened an emergency meeting, with the sole purpose of deciding Solskjaer’s future at the club.
He should have been replaced
Many fans believe that Ole Gunnar Solskjaar should have been replaced at Manchester United, but I think the board of directors did the right thing. United fans no longer complain about the level of football played on the pitch. Rather, they believe they are capable of challenging the best teams in the world for the most prestigious trophies. Moreover, Ole has done a good job improving the team, a trait Jose Mourinho would not have complained about if he was given the same squad.
Despite his limited coaching ability, Solskjaer has been a good manager, and has won over half of his matches at Manchester United. Only Sir Alex Ferguson and Jose Mourinho have won more games. Moreover, Solskjaer has led United to their best result in the Champions League in five years, thanks to a dramatic comeback against Paris Saint-Germain. The win secured a 3-3 aggregate scoreline, and United have reached the last eight on away goals.
Solskjaer should be replaced at Manchester United. Ed Woodward has the power to make managerial decisions, but he has given Solskjaer a three-year contract. That would cost the club PS7 million to replace him. But the Glazers have a reputation for being shrewd businessmen and making the best use of the resources available.
Mauricio Pochettino has been linked with a permanent role at Manchester United. He has had success at three clubs, and was relatively successful as Italy’s national coach. However, Manchester United’s next manager will have to make hard choices. If Solskjaer does not fit into that mold, then Pochettino will be the right choice.
He was not a good fit for Manchester United
If we look at the last few months of Solskjaer’s reign, we will see a number of positives and negatives. He has brought back Harry Maguire, who started the game against Leicester and is regarded as a great man-manager. Luke Shaw, who was released at the end of last season, is another example of Solskjaer’s personal touch.
While his approach has been atypical for a Manchester United manager, he has been welcomed by the club’s fans and has resuscitated the team’s recent form. The only blemish he has is his inability to motivate his players. In a typical United match, he had his players chanting for the goalkeeper and defenders. The 2-0 defeat against Liverpool in his first match in charge was a blight on his reputation, and the players have no choice but to give their all for the manager.
After the defeat to Liverpool, Solskjaer appeared frustrated and annoyed, and the media reported that the Norwegian is not a good fit for the club. The club have reportedly been drawing up a list of potential candidates for the director of football role, although Solskjaer has not yet been officially appointed. Other candidates include Paul Mitchell, Stuart Webber, Mike Phelan, and even former star Rio Ferdinand.
After being hired, Solskjaer has won six out of eight matches. Only two of his games were losses against PSG, Chelsea, and Liverpool. During the last nine months, Solskjaer has won two Premier League games but has lost four. Then, on 16 October, the team lost 4-2 to Leicester City. On 24 October, Solskjaer oversaw a 5-0 home defeat against Liverpool. The next week, the club lost 2-0 to arch-rivals Manchester City, claiming just one point.