The Red Devils shocked the whole footballing universe as they defeated an in form Paris Saint Germain side in their own turf in the second leg of their UEFA Champions league Round of 16 tie
It was quite easily Manchester United’s best result in the last few years. Perhaps their best ever since the great Sir Alex Ferguson stepped down as their manager. Truth is, United have been in absolutely sensational form ever since former forward Ole Gunnar Solskjaer replaced Jose Mourinho at the helm in December. Solskjaer has so far overseen 17 games as the manager, and has lost just 1 of them (the 2-0 defeat to PSG in the first leg). Moreover, when he took over, United were languishing in the 6th position and a top 4 finish was looking like a far fetched dream.
However, fast forward some 4 months, and United sit comfortably in the 4th spot ahead of their clash against Gunners. They trail 3rd placed Tottenham Hotspur by just 3 points, and also have a game in hand. Some players like Victor Lindelof, Luke Shaw, Marcus Rashford etc who were struggling for form and consistency under Mourinho have now emerged as United’s best players. Paul Pogba is a prime example of this. Speaking about his stint at the club, Solskjaer said,
“I think I’ve been secretly always wanting to do the job I’m doing now,” he said.
“And I probably believed more that I could be a football coach and a manager than a player, because it took me a few years to get to the level I wanted to be as a player.”
On being asked whether managing feels better than playing, he said,
“Both yes and no really, because the best thing in the world is to play football. That was the best job ever,” he said.
“You just concentrated on yourself, your own lifestyle, do the X amount of minutes that the gaffer asked you to, come into training, rest, recover, do everything that you can to do the job that he wants you to do and just enjoy it.
“Of course, I feel honoured and privileged to be the one who makes the decisions, and I think I prepared all my life to make decisions like this, because ever since I was a kid I played all these computer games and [had] written all the teams, selected teams with my mates, in the good old teams with Zico and [Diego] Maradona and [Marco] van Basten, all them teams that I used to pick.”
With the things that he has done and the success he has achieved in the brief time afforded to him, it looks highly likely that Solskjaer will be made the permanent manager in the near future.