United’s last two games have been humiliating defeats in the Champions League to Liverpool, with Solskjaer becoming increasingly unpopular among supporters. It is looking more and more likely that he will not fulfill his contract at Old Trafford after failing to achieve what was expected of him.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is running out of time after an embarrassing loss to Liverpool. The United boss has had a terrible run of form and the club must get their act together quickly.
MANCHESTER, United Kingdom — Liverpool fans screamed “Ole Must Stay” towards the conclusion of their 5-0 demolition of Manchester United, and an hour later, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer gave his Liverpudlian tormentors precisely what they wanted by declaring he is still the right man for the job at Old Trafford.
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During United’s biggest-ever home loss against Liverpool, though, no United supporters sang Solskjaer’s name. Solskjaer may feel he can still be a success, but he’s starting to sound like a guy fighting a hurricane ready to overwhelm him.
When Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United fell 3-1 at Anfield in December 2018, he was fired within 48 hours. That was a poor day for United at Anfield, but this was far, much worse. If Solskjaer is able to manage another game, it will be due to United’s inability to identify a viable successor more than his ability to do so.
Since Sir Alex Ferguson departed in 2013, United’s owners, the Glazer family, have always taken their time in appointing new managers. David Moyes, Louis van Gaal, and Jose Mourinho were all fired months after it became clear that the team was on the verge of collapse. If they stick with Solskjaer, history will repeat itself.
Jurgen Klopp, who turned down the opportunity to lead United when David Moyes was fired in 2014, is a world-class coach with a world-class squad. Liverpool thrashed United at Old Trafford, with Mohamed Salah scoring a hat trick to continue his remarkable run of form.
Klopp stated, “The outcome is ridiculous.” “I inquired whether there had been one like this before, and if not, how long it would take. The guys contributed a good chapter to the book.”
Liverpool are a group of players that know precisely what they’re doing and follow the coach’s instructions to the letter, with recent Champions League and Premier League victories demonstrating Klopp’s ability to assemble a successful squad.
However, Solskjaer, who claimed after the game that his team had struck a “block wall” in recent weeks, seems to be drifting from one bad result to the next. And he’s now the target of mockery from opposing fans, who screamed “Ole, give us a wave” cruelly as Liverpool played keep-ball in the dying moments.
This was a day when everything that could go wrong did go wrong for Solskjaer. Following the first exhibition of disastrous defence by his men, Liverpool seized the lead via Naby Keita less than 60 seconds after Bruno Fernandes squandered a great opportunity to open the score on four minutes.
It was 4-0 before halftime, and United’s defense did not improve, with Luke Shaw and Harry Maguire clashing in an amusing effort to halt Liverpool before Diogo Jota scored the second.
Even after Salah made it 5-0 early in the second half, VAR judged Cristiano Ronaldo’s consolation goal offside, prompting further mocking celebrations from Liverpool supporters, and replacement Paul Pogba was sent off for a studs-up tackle on Keita (again, after a VAR review).
All of the above may be ascribed to individual faults by United’s players, but such errors happen much too often for them to be a coincidence with this squad. Top teams don’t commit the same mistakes over and over again, but United look to be trapped in a rut of ineptness under Solskjaer, with just one clean sheet in their previous 21 games.
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United has lost five of their previous nine games in all competitions and has just one point from their past 12 Premier League fixtures. In that period, they’ve won three games: a 2-1 win against West Ham after a stoppage-time penalty miss by the Hammers, a 2-1 win over Villarreal with a Cristiano Ronaldo goal five minutes into additional time, and Wednesday’s 3-2 triumph over Atalanta, when United trailed 2-0 at halftime after a poor start.
When United wins, it seems like they do it in a chaotic way, and the opposite is true when they lose.
If Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wants to maintain his Manchester United job, he must produce results quickly. Getty
But, according to Solskjaer, who has been in command for little over three years, his squad is on the verge of accomplishing its goal, whatever that goal may be.
When asked whether he had any reservations about his fitness for the post, he answered, “I have gone too far, we have come too far as a group, and we are too close to give up now.” “I believe in myself, and I am on the verge of achieving our goals at this club.”
We’ll have to wait and see. United’s £135 million buying binge on Jadon Sancho, Raphael Varane, and Cristiano Ronaldo has helped the team little, and it’s tough to name a single player who has improved under Solskjaer.
Several Liverpool players have blossomed into world-class performances under Klopp’s tutelage. Salah is a prime example.
The Glazers, like the man himself, think Solskjaer is the guy, but if he stays in charge for the rest of the season, it’s tough to see where a victory will come from. The next two games are away matches against Tottenham Hotspur and Atalanta. When is the next game at home? It’s just a question of Manchester City being neighbors and champions.
So things for Manchester United might become a lot worse before they start to get better.