Can Ole Gunnar Solskjaer take United back to the top?


Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was confirmed as the permanent boss of Manchester United last week. Can he be the one to bring the glory days back to one of the biggest clubs in the world? You can bet on the Premier League here.

On Thursday, Manchester United confirmed that former striker and treble winner Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was going to be their permanent manager on a three-year deal. For United, Ole, backed by a remarkable turnaround and upturn in results, was the best candidate to bring back the glory days.

For Solskjaer, the honeymoon of the last few months is now over and the journey to the Promised Land starts now. Despite his legendary status and apparent endearing personality, can he really get the Red Devils back on top?

A gamble?

The 46-year-old Norwegian appointment comes to many as a massive gamble. His obvious inexperience and moving into the totally unchartered territory of managing arguably one of the biggest clubs in the world raises a few questions if he is the right man.

On Tuesday, his team suffered a 2-1 defeat to Wolves, their third in four matches. The loss severely dented their top four hopes. The defeat at Wolves laid bare the colossal task he has at United. Both goals were sloppy, caused by individual errors by midfielder Fred and United’s defence. The challenge that lies ahead for the ‘baby-faced assassin’ is to build a team that can compete against the best in England and in Europe. A team that will follow the traditions of the 20-time Premier League champions pioneered by the great Sir Matt Busby and cemented by Sir Alex Ferguson.

Transfer negotiations

Despite being in charge of Cardiff City and Molde, at this level, Solskjaer is a rookie, no doubt. He has no experience of handling a transfer kitty the size of United’s, but how he navigates the summer transfer window will have a huge impact on how his first season as the permanent boss will turn out.

It will be difficult but possible to see the real Manchester United of old. The current squad needs a lot of improvement; a centre back, a midfielder, a full back and a right winger, will be the immediate areas the new boss will have to address before the season kicks off in August.

Backed with a backroom staff led by club legend and Fergie’s former assistant Mike Phelan alongside Michael Carrick and Kieran McKenna, Solskjaer has all the elements to succeed.

The real test starts now, building a title contending team following years of shambles since the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson.