Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has gone into the red at last. With United’s 3-1 defeat at home to PSG tonight, it appears Ole’s used up all of his credit. More fans than ever want #OleOut.
This was inevitable. Putting Solskjaer in charge of one of the biggest clubs in the world is like asking someone with a provisional driving licence to get behind the wheel of a Formula 1 car. Clunky, unoriginal analogy, but true. If you watched a lot of United games this season, there’s only one conclusion you could make: he’s a mediocre coach.
There’s no coherence in United’s team selection or play. I suspect Ole is mostly making it up as he goes along. He is a very nice guy, and his players seem to like him, but that’s not enough to fill a trophy cabinet. No way is he good enough to lead United to a Premier League or Champions League title. Not happening. At best, he should be United’s forwards coach. That would suit him well.
4 – Manchester United have now lost more of their eight home games in all competitions this season (4) than they did in 28 matches at Old Trafford last term (3). Wheel. pic.twitter.com/XJv9VZ4caZ
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) December 2, 2020
Contrary to appearances, there’s a lot of talent in United’s squad, but Solskjaer is not close to maximising it. He makes basic errors all the time. For example: tonight, midway through the first half, Fred got a yellow card for moving his head into the face of Leandro Paredes (Paredes is a shithouse of the highest order, by the way). He should have been sent off, but he got lucky. The blindingly obvious move was to hook Fred at half-time – especially when you have Donny van de Beek (Solskjaer’s treatment of the Dutchman alone is enough to make you question his coaching) and Paul Pogba on the bench. But no, the Brazilian (whose main role is to break up play, which, you know, means tackling a lot) stayed on and was sent off after a second yellow card with 20 minutes still to play. I mean, honestly, who saw that coming!? Not Ole, apparently. He admitted after the match that maybe it was a mistake to keep Fred on… yep, the rest of us were playing (F)red card bingo.
United must act now. The right move is to sack Solskjaer at once and replace him with a much better coach. Mauricio Pochettino, a proven manager with Premier League experience, for instance. I hear Poch is looking for work. But that demands a level of decisiveness that United’s board hasn’t hitherto shown.
P.S. I don’t think Ole is a significantly worse coach than Zinedine Zidane, which might seem an absurd statement given that the latter won three Champions League titles in a row. I think Zidane is shit too, and he was carried hard to those trophies by Cristiano Ronaldo. Big clubs should not hire managers based on sentimental goodwill. It never ends well.