After the massive decision yesterday to sack boss Jose Mourinho, Manchester United have now appointed former striker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as interim boss until the end of the season. Solskjaer has a contract with Molde in his homeland until 2021. However, they have allowed their boss to leave to take temporary charge at United on the condition that he returns at the end of the campaign.
A strange appointment
This appointment is a strange one. Solskjaer is a club legend and knows the Manchester club well from his playing days. He also started his coaching career with United’s reserve tea.
However, even the most hardcore Manchester United fans are questioning the wisdom of appointing Solskjaer even on an interim basis. Maybe the club believes that his appointment can lead to the Red Devils rediscovering an attacking style of play, rather than the dull football served up under Jose Mourinho.
A poor managerial record at Cardiff
The reason for United’s fans concerns is probably the Norwegian’s record at Cardiff in his previous spell in English football management. After doing an impressive job at Molde in his first senior coaching role, Cardiff appointed the Norwegian in January 2014 in an attempt to move out of the Premier League relegation zone.
Unfortunately, for Solskjaer his team finished rock bottom of the Premier League table and suffered relegation to the Championship. The Bluebirds then made a poor start to life in the second tier. The Welsh club decided to fire Solskjaer in mid-September.
The former United striker left Cardiff having won just nine of his 30 games in charge while suffering 16 defeats. His spell in south Wales has not exactly helped his managerial reputation.
In the less pressure-cooker atmosphere of the Norwegian top-flight, he has thrived once again. However, stepping up to manage Manchester United is a major one. It could prove to be a good or terrible move for Solskjaer.
United needs to make major changes
According to Sky Sports, United are looking to hire a technical director and change the structure of the club, while Solskjaer manages the playing side. Something has to change at the club, as the Red Devils have struggled for success since the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson in 2013.
United have had a winning mentality and a clear identity for the majority of the Premier League era. However, both those vital factors for a successful team have been missing in recent seasons.
There is more wrong with the club and team than just who is in charge of the team. Mediocrity seems to have spread through the club like wildfire from the boardroom to the playing staff.
Manchester United are one of the biggest clubs in the world. Yet, in the last few years, you would not have known that from their performances on the pitch. They may have finished in the top four in the last two seasons, but they were miles behind their rivals.
This season they are outsiders to clinch a Champions League place, as they are currently 11 points adrift of fourth-place Chelsea. The next six months could be crucial for the future of Manchester United Football Club.
If United are to return to their glory days, then the club needs to start making the right decisions and quickly, or the Red Devils may slip further into the mediocre territory they have ventured into this season.
Will Ole Gunnar Solskjaer be a good appointment for Manchester United?