Failed to use squad properly, did not create team identity & more: 5 things Solskjaer got wrong at United
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s time as the Man United manager is over, and there’s every reason to believe that the board acted just a bit too late to part ways with the club legend.
Below are some reason the why the Reds board sack him.
1. Never won silverware
For a long time, United could not even reach a final under Solskjaer. The team stumbled in the semifinals of the Europa League, the FA Cup and the League Cup (twice).
2. Gave Maguire the armband
Solskjaer raised quite a lot of eyebrows when he appointed Harry Maguire as the club captain less than six months after the defender’s signing. It’s rumoured now that even some of the players questioned the manager’s thinking
Maguire was already under a lot of pressure to justify the ₤80m price tag, and Solskjaer did not make it any easier for him. What’s worse, his leadership qualities were never that evident.
We don’t know whether Solskjaer tried to push the board to sign a defensive midfielder, but with all the money spent elsewhere (well over ₤400m over three years), it’s hard to believe the club would not get such a player if the manager had made a convincing case for him.
3. Did not create a team identity
Far too often, United relied on flashes of individual brilliance from the likes of Bruno Fernandes or Cristiano Ronaldo rather than a coherent team performance.
Even the fans who watched the Red Devils every week could not figure out what team Solskjaer wanted to build, a high-pressing or a counter-attacking one or maybe something else completely.
The most consistent thing about Ole’s side was their ability to come from behind: Man United registered 19 comeback wins during his reign. It was hardly sustainable, though, and the fact that if often happened against average teams is damning in itself.
Even Gary Neville who never called for Solskjaer to be sacked pinpointed the biggest problem of the team — they never looked like, well, a team, and this was at the core of Man United’s struggles under the former manager.