Manchester United chief Ed Woodward has insisted that on-field success is the “top priority” at the club, amid a fresh report putting Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s future in further peril.
The Norwegian manager continues to face scrutiny over his tenure following a poor run of form. While the pressure has been on Solskjaer for some time, defeats to Liverpool and Manchester City at Old Trafford have worsened the mood.
Amid the concern for the manager, reports have linked United with making a change.
Zinedine Zidane, Erik Ten Hag and Brendan Rodgers are all supposedly on the Red Devils’ radar.
Speaking alongside the release of United’s latest financial results, executive vice-chairman Woodward spoke out on the situation.
He said (via ESPN): “While these financial results today demonstrate our resilience through the pandemic, our top priority is success on the pitch.
“The manager, players and everyone at the club are determined to achieve that objective.”
United revealed that revenues have increased by 16 per cent to £126.5million. That change mainly comes because of supporters returning to Old Trafford.
Wages have also gone up by 23 per cent to £88.5million due to the arrivals of Jadon Sancho, Cristiano Ronaldo and Raphael Varane in the summer.
Meanwhile, net debt has gone down to £439.7million. As for other incomings, United earned £17.4million from Daniel James’ move to Leeds and the activation of Romelu Lukaku’s sell-on fee.
United return to action on Saturday when facing Watford at Vicarage Road in the Premier League.
The Manchester Evening News reports that Solskjaer will ‘almost certainly’ take charge of that game. However, the newspaper adds that the Red Devils have begun work on finding his successor.
The report claims that United chiefs have ‘privately’ decided to find a new manager following the defeats to Liverpool and City.
Reports have purported that Leicester boss Rodgers is the favourite to take over. The latest claims add weight to that, as United supposedly see him as the most viable candidate.
They also see the Northern Irishman as a ‘credible’ and ‘progressive’ choice. However, his contract with the Foxes means that United must pay compensation to Leicester and Solskjaer, to whom they handed a new three-year deal in July.
As for who else is on their radar, Spain coach Luis Enrique has impressed some members of the club’s hierarchy. Ten Hag – who Rio Ferdinand has backed to take over – is also an option.
Still, it remains unclear when United will sack Solskjaer. The club are uncertain over the best arrival time for his successor.