It is no surprise that various sources have confirmed that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be offered a new contract as Manchester United manager, despite the season not being finished yet and no positions secured.
The Norwegian has improved this Man United side since taking over, with them currently sitting 2nd in the table and reaching the final few stages of the Europa League. However, to some, it still hasn’t been good enough. A lot of critics do not agree with the types of results United are getting. For example, if you look at their results against the “Top 6” teams this season, United have only lot 2 out of 8 games, which you could say is great, but not when they have drawn 5 of them and only managed 1 win, which was recent against their rivals Manchester City.
The draws simply aren’t good enough for some fans. United have been accused of not going for games and being too cautious where they sit back and focus more on not conceding than actually scoring, which is why most of their draws have been boring 0-0’s. Especially when you look at the game against Liverpool, who were there for the taking having been in shocking form and a list of injuries to key players. Yet Man United sat back and didn’t create enough chances to win the game and they didn’t deserve to win it either, a boring point was a fair display of their performance.
Fans luckily don’t have to pay money to attend these boring matches because they are behind closed doors, but it still is just as bad having to watch from the TV screen. It is not just the UK fans that tune in to watch United either. United have a global fanbase that watch from all over the world, using Premier League streaming websites that allow them to not miss any of the action.
So, there is one side to the argument that Ole needs to be doing more and getting more out of the team, being better against the bigger sides and picking up more points. But also, if you look at some of their other stats, he has really done a good job. Prior to their FA Cup defeat against Leicester City, they were unbeaten away in all competitions for over a year! That is a truly remarkable stat, a record breaker that Ole and Manchester United will certainly be proud of.
So, there are signs of this squad improving and signs that they could really challenge for the league and Champions League in the next few seasons. The united board think this too as they are prepared to offer him a new contract to allow him to further develop his site and improve with them.
But what can we expect from Ole? Is he going to bring back the Manchester United we have always known or was giving him a new contract actually an insult to United and their fans by saying “expect more of what we have seen”?
The summer transfer window will be a huge one for Solskjaer and Manchester United. Not only because they personally need to spend big in order to improve their current squad, but the teams around them also plan to spend big. With Aguero leaving Manchester City, that means that they will be on the hunt for a new star striker. The same goes for Chelsea, so far, they have been massively let down from their big signing Timo Werner and could possibly look to replace him or involve him in a swap deal.
There is one big name on the market that these sides, as well as other huge clubs around Europe are all wanting to sign, Erling Haaland.
Haaland has been clinical at Borussia Dortmund and they have stated that if any club wants to sign him, they will have to pay around €180 Million. There are few clubs that can afford this price tag and Manchester United are one of them.
Despite having a frosty relationship with his agent Mino Raiola, United are confident they can do what is needed to bring the young star to Old Trafford. What gives fans a lot of confidence is the fact that Haaland, like Ole, is Norweigan and Ole has previously coached Haaland years ago when they were in Norway for club Molde FK.
Their relationship in Norway seemed to be good, there were no reports of any disagreements and therefore Haaland might slightly favour Ole. The only potential issue in this case is whether Erling Haaland actually believes in Ole’s process and whether he can see himself being their star man, leading them to many Premier League Trophies and Champions Leagues.
Surely, if he was wanting to win big trophies in the near future, his safest bet would be to join Manchester City? But there are also complications there, Mino, Haaland’s agent has stated in the past that he would never do business again with Pep Guardiola, who is the current Manchester City manager. So, it is all up for speculation at the moment and nothing is likely to be confirmed until after the Euros.
A striker isn’t the only position that United will look to strengthen in, it is clear that United are also after a defender, likely to partner Harry Maguire. They will also look at Midfielders and potentially Wingers, with them showing interest in Wolves’ Pedro Neto. But nothing has been confirmed yet from United.
If it was the case that they made some big signings this summer, then they are likely to be real contenders for the Premier League and other big competitions. There is no alternative goal for United, they want trophies, the fans demand trophies and if that demand is not met in the next year or two, then Ole could follow the likes of previous managers, by being sacked.
We should remember that Solskjaer has only been at the club a couple of years and sometimes it can take managers longer than that to settle in. When Alex Ferguson first joined the reds, he had no success in his first 4 years and was on the verge of being sacked. Jurgen Klopp, the Liverpool manager also went years without silverware before then winning both the Champions League and Premier League.
It will be interesting to keep a close eye on Manchester United as this season comes to a close and also next season. With Ole likely to be given a new contract, what plans does he have in store?