Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: It will take time for Jim Ratcliffe to improve Man United

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer hopes under-fire successor Erik ten Hag comes good and says Jim Ratcliffe is unlikely to have a “magic wand” to immediately turn around Manchester United’s fortunes.

This has been a miserable second season in the hotseat for the Dutchman, whose stuttering side are 11 points off the Premier League top four and have the FA Cup as their only remaining route to silverware.

But Ratcliffe’s recent minority purchase of the club from the Glazer family offers hope of long-term improvement, with the Ineos chairman also taking control of football operations.

Rumours continue about Ten Hag’s future as the summer approaches and Solskjaer, United’s previous permanent manager, would like to see him succeed at Old Trafford.

“I don’t think there’s a magic wand (at United) as in, ‘We’ve changed the owners’,” the 1999 treble hero said in the latest episode of Stick to Football in partnership with Sky Bet.

“Obviously, they’ve got their ways of working – the Glazers have still got their commercial – who knows how it’s going to be in football with that side of it.

“Obviously Erik, I hope he’s going to be successful. We hope he’s going to make it, but you never know what the new owners are thinking. It’s about results and consistency the rest of the season.”

Solskjaer knows all about any difficulties working under the Glazer family and with many of the current United squad, having been in charge between December 2018 and November 2021.

The Norwegian kept his counsel for a long time but is beginning to speak publicly again, including recently revealing some United players did not want to be captain for certain matches.


“No one said ‘no’ to being the club captain, it was just for certain games,” Solskjaer said.

“Yes, but they didn’t want to say it themselves, they had other people come up to me and say it. It was disappointing. It’s a different generation, its Gen Z. It’s petty and shows a lack of ambition.”

United players have not only been turning down the chance to skipper the side but even face a handful of underarm questions in a pre-match host broadcast interview.

“Many players said no to doing the pre-match interviews, the three questions,” Solskjaer said.

“You had the go-to’s, Bruno (Fernandes) always did it, Harry (Maguire) always did it, Victor (Lindelof) did it, David (De Gea) did it, Luke Shaw did it.

“The others were worried about the questions, so preferred not to do it. You’re scared of the whole reaction maybe, but you also understand some of the players’ mental health.”

Solskjaer has focused on the wellbeing of himself and his family since being sacked by United, turning down numerous opportunities to return to the game.

“I needed time out, and I have properly enjoyed it. Just prioritised myself, family – and I have had a few offers with (other clubs) and it’s like, ‘Nah, I’m not ready’,” he added.

“It’s one of them, it’s got to be somewhere where I can be myself, not like anyone dictating, ‘You need to do this, you need to do this’, because when you’ve been at United, you manage them, you learn a few things, and you want to do it your way next time. So, yeah, I’ve enjoyed myself.

“That’s the thing, you think, ‘I don’t really need a job’, but then if something pops up then yeah, why not?”

Sourse: breakingnews.ie

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