Manchester Unitedsuffered defeat toNewcastlethis weekend leaving Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on the brink of the sack.
Solskjaer has overseen an horrendous start to the new season with United now just two points above the drop zone and already 15 points behind Liverpool.
Fans are calling for his head and pundits are questioning his techniques. David de Gea admitted performances weren’t good enough and Marcus Rashford has made a public statement calling on the players to pull together and improve.
So should Ed Woodward sack Solskjaer, or should Woodward in fact be paying the price for United’s poor start to the season?
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer may not be the man to get Manchester United out of this mess, but sacking the Norwegian and appointing a new manager will put the Red Devils back to square one.
Solskjaer needs to be allowed time to grow into the role, build a squad and prove that he is the right man for the job.
A combination of Sir Alex Ferguson, Bill Shankly, Pep Guardiola and Alf Ramsey couldn’t get United out of this mess at the moment.
It has to be accepted that the season is going nowhere. Focus on the cup competitions to try to get some silverware and then rebuild.
The problem ultimately lies with Ed Woodward with plenty of empty promises to Solskjaer and the Manchester United faithful.
Where is this director of football? And where are the bundles of cash that Solskjaer thought he could use?
If anybody needs to go, it’s Woodward with wrong decision constantly followed by wrong decisions.
Man Utd news: Should Ed Woodward sack Ole Gunnar Solskjaer?(Image: GETTY)
Manchester United could be forced to sack Ole Gunnar Solskjaer(Image: GETTY)
Given the injury crisis Solskjaer’s has had since the start of the season, yes he is still the man. But he needs to somehow inspire the players currently at his disposal because he has seemed almost apologetic for the players in the media.
Understandable that he’s taking pressure off the players, but that doesn’t help in this current situation. Show you mean business by showing your frustrations and getting a clear message across to the players as his current approach hasn’t worked, but there’s still time.
And should Ed Woodward be trusted to lead the ship after another – seemingly – failed managerial appointment?
This is probably more to do with the recruitment process and no clear plan of attack in terms of transfers and previous
Louis Van Gaal to Jose Mourinho and then Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been a bizarre string of managerial appointments, largely due to their differencing styles of play.
Solskjaer seems intent on trusting youth – and that will need time – but Ed Woodward now needs to help the United boss out in the transfer market to bring in the right players to help the core group. If he can’t do that in January then surely he needs to be the one in the firing line.
(Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is on the brink at Manchester United(Image: REUTERS)
Solskjaer is in a tough situation because his United players simply aren’t good enough to challenge for the title – and arguably the top four. However, nine points from eight games won’t cut it at Old Trafford.
The Norwegian impressed when he took over from Jose Mourinho and injected much needed confidence into his squad.
However, bizarre decisions such as letting Lukaku and Sanchez leave without securing replacements could cost Solskjaer his job.
It looks like United’s stars don’t respect the Red Devils hero, who is still an inexperienced manager.
Best case scenario for United is Tottenham decide to ax Mauricio Pochettino if their poor run continues. Ed Woodward can then save himself £ 30 m and snap up the Argentinian for free.
Pochettino would command respect at Old Trafford as his record speaks for itself. Yes, he’s yet to win silverware in north London, but his work at Spurs on a limited budget has been nothing short of remarkable.
His time at Tottenham may be up with rifts in the dressing room set to sabotage their season. United would be stupid not to step in and land Pochettino.
Solskjaer may be labeled the scapegoat for United’s downfalls this season, however, Woodward could easily take the blame.
The Red Devils executive vice-chairman must get his next managerial appointment right otherwise the former banker could see his time at United come to an end.
It looks as though Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is running out of ideas at Old Trafford.
But it has to be said that the Norwegian has not been helped by an abysmal transfer policy in recent years. This United squad has been allowed to deteriorate, with top quality players replaced by inferior imports.
How a top class center forward like Romelu Lukaku can be allowed to go without a decent replacement coming in is hard to fathom.
That points to problems further up the line at Old Trafford – as does the appointment in the first place of Solskjaer.
It is the fourth successive appointment since the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson which has not worked.
Ole’s appointment, of an Old Trafford hero, a darling of the crowd, was initially successful.
But the Norwegian now looks lost, his team seemingly lacking in inspiration, even motivation.
But no manager can be expected to succeed at the top level if his squad is not good enough – and that has been Solskjaer’s major problem.
So the club needed to back him with big spending last summer and an overhaul of the squad – which they did not do.
Or they need to promote their youth players, as Chelsea are doing with Frank Lampard. But to do that you need enough good young players coming through at the right time.
A tricky one to get right.
It also takes the right man being in charge on the field to bring those young players in and coach them.
Right now, as evidenced by the dismal defeat at Newcastle, Solskjaer does not look like that man.
It may well be time for a change, with a more experienced man brought in – maybe a Max Allegri – with that man handed the funds to do the job properly.
But if he goes, Ole’s head should not be the only one that rolls.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is not, and never has been, the right manager for Manchester United, under-qualified on his previous record , and without an identifiable playing strategy and philosophy. The surprise is not that he is struggling, but that so many people thought he was a good choice by a club clearly wallowing in self-delusion.
It’s incredible to me that even now some wise observers still think he should be given more time in the job. Manchester United’s decline will only accelerate if that happens.
Who should take over? The obvious choice from within the English game is Mauricio Pochettino, if he can be lured away from his current troubles at Tottenham, and if he is willing to step into a club that has lost its way so badly. Pochettino is an outstanding football manager, and would be ideal for the major work required at Old Trafford. If not him, then former Juventus boss Max Allegri is waiting in the wings.
The parlous record of Ed Woodward on the football side of life at Old Trafford is also plain to see . The executive vice-chairman may be brilliant at landing commercial deals, but his judgement in selecting managers is as hopeless as his naivety in the transfer market.
United should appoint a football director to take charge of these matters. The obvious man with links to the club is Edwin Van Der Sar, proving his worth beyond question right now at Ajax.
Man Utd news: Ole Gunner Solskjaer is under pressure at United(Image: REUTERS)
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is not the right man for Manchester United. He was the right man to flush out the misery the toxic Jose Mourinho had brought in, but he should have signed off after that and never should have been handed the reigns on a permanent basis.
Whether there is anyone else who can offer a similar rise in performances over the short term is the big question facing Ed Woodward, but the answer must simply be yes. It could be anyone from Mauricio Pochettino, Brendan Rodgers or Max Allegri – all three would have the strength of conviction to get this team back to something resembling what it should be.
The squad – plus one decent striker in January – should still be capable of getting into the top four. But they currently look on course to be battling in the bottom half. A defeat to Liverpool in their next manager will surely spell the end for Solskjaer and offer the next man in two and a half months to plan for January. Bring in a forward, a central midfielder and a reliable left back and this should look a half decent squad again ready to get the fans back onside.
Woodward’s big problem is his flip flopping on the director of football. He seemed to want one then went cold. They’ve been linked with a handful of names, but haven’t been able to appoint anyone. Maybe Woodward is unable to close the deal, or maybe he actually wants to keep a firm grip of the recruitment business. Either way he’s failing at his job and should really pay with it, but the fact is he seems teflon in the eyes of the Glazers meaning things are unlikely to change unless he finally gets a managerial appointment correct.
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