Champions League

Manchester United will make a surprise announcement for their fans this week.

Sir Alex Ferguson’s No 2 will stay at Old Trafford, United to seal the contract soon for Norwegian assistant .

The Norwegian Interim manager Ole Gunner Solskjaer was rewarded with the permanent manager’s job at United last Thursday after he impressed during his tenure as caretaker boss at Old Trafford. As per the news, Manchester United are expected to announce that Mike Phelan will remain at the club in the next week.

The Norwegian’s assistant, Phelan, will also be getting a new contract next week hopefully. The 56-year-old coach, who made his name as Sir Alex Ferguson’s No 2, returned to the club after Solskjaer took on the role as interim manager. Solskjaer and Phelan have overseen a dramatic change in the club’s fortunes since their arrival in December when United decided to sack Jose Mourinho.

The United boss considers Phelan a “key part of the club” and expects a deal will be confirmed soon. But, Phelan had two unsuccessful spells as manager at Norwich and Hull City, before joining Australian side Central Coast Mariners as sporting director. He was Sir Alex Ferguson’s right-hand man during three Premier League title wins, a Club World Cup, two League Cups and two runs to the final of the UEFA Champions League. He departed the club shortly after Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement.

Although Alex Ferguson’s No 2 is still under a contract with the Mariners, he is expected to agree terms with United in the near future. Solskjaer expects his No 2 to agree a deal with executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward when United have a free week.

Solskjaer said,

No update [at the moment] because we had the Watford game, now Wolves. I think Ed Woodward and Mike Phelan will get things sorted very soon. He’s a key part of the club.”

When Solskjaer took over at United they were 11 points off fourth place. He and Mike Phelan have seen United win 15 of their 20 games. They are now fifth in the table and are only two points off third-placed Arsenal.

Solskjaer has also guided the Red Devils to the quarter-finals of the Champions League after a recent nail-biting victory over Paris Saint-Germain.United will now face Barcelona in the next round, with the first leg taking place at Old Trafford on April 10. The duo of Solskjaer and Phelan have seen United win 15 of their 20 games, with two draws and three losses.

Author’s take:

Solskjaer already admitted the Sir Alex Ferguson’s No. 2 has got everything that an assistant must carry. The duo have been doing tremendous amount of work so far, with Solskjaer winning all of the first five games. The duo absolutely carry a positive atmosphere with great knowledge, experience and personality around the place.

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