Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has come under renewed pressure after Manchester City comfortably ran out 2-0 winners at Old Trafford on Saturday.
The Norwegian’s future will once again remain a topic of hot debate over the coming days, and reported talks held behind the scenes will only add fuel to the fire.
It was a familiar sight as United fans stayed behind at Old Trafford to vent their feelings at another poor display.
Two weeks ago, they were thrashed 5-0 at home to bitter rivals Liverpool, and although City’s scoreline was not as emphatic, their performance was leagues apart from the Red Devils.
An Eric Bailly own goal got the ball rolling, and Bernardo Silva’s poke at the far post rounded off the scoring as Pep Guardiola’s side coasted through the second half.
With the international break looming, Solskjaer has once again been left vulnerable as they now lie nine points off the Premier League pace.
Based on what has allegedly happened behind the scenes over the past two weeks, Solskjaer may count himself lucky to still be in the United dugout.
According to The Guardian, United co-owner Joel Glazer was part of ‘urgent talks’ on the 48-year-old’s future after Liverpool’s Old Trafford victory.
There had been fierce speculation that Antonio Conte was open to discussing the role if the hierarchy believed it was time for a change of direction.
However, they seemingly opted to stick, and Conte was sensationally snapped up by Tottenham this week.
It was broadly assumed that Solskjaer had the following three games to prove his worth to the board, and Saturday’s game against City was the third in that instalment.
A win over Tottenham and a last-gasp draw against Atalanta were the other two, leaving it up in the air as to whether the manager has done enough to secure his future.
While the scoreline was perhaps not dramatic enough to inspire immediate action from the club, the gulf in class may well prompt more discussions behind the scenes during the upcoming two-week hiatus.
“They looked frightened to death in and out of possession as if they were crumpled into a little ball waiting to get beat,” vented United legend Gary Neville to Sky Sports after the game.
“You can get beat no doubt, but they are flaky when it comes to big games.
“They were stiff, rash, lacking composure and you’re playing against an ice cold, unemotional and brutal football team in Manchester City.
“They got destroyed today, make no mistake about it, that was mauling.
“I dont think there’s any chance they’ll make a decision during this season unless it gets so bad, but it’s getting to that stage where it is so bad.”