A THREAD

A THREAD:

The media’s propensity for negatives, along with lazy journalism, has seen little attempt to really understand what Solskjaer’s #MUFC tenure has entailed, or his qualities. Instead, simply citing bad results to mean bad management

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Here’s the OTHER side of the story…
1) No “top job” on his CV is a nonsensical argument – it’s often been proved this is NOT required. Guardiola & Zidane both had less experience when they got the Barca & Real jobs. Conte & Simeone had not coached top-flight European teams when they got Juventus & Atlético jobs…
3) In his first role as 1st team forwards coach he helped Ronaldo, Rooney, & Tevez as #MUFC won the PL & Champions League double. Ronaldo described him as a “very good” coach & a man. Rio at the time said he’d become “a top coach” due to his “great ideas about the game”…
4) In his Reserve Team role at #MUFC, he proved his ability to work with young players & saw several advance to the 1st team, while winning the Reserve League & a couple of cups. This ability has been profound this szn, with clear progression of Greenwood, Williams, Rashford…
5) He then led Molde to their most successful period – a first ever league title in their 100th anniversary year, before retaining the league the following season, & winning the domestic cup in his 3rd season… #MUFC
6) The job at Cardiff was perhaps an ill-advised choice, yet it’s an experience he will have learned from as a young coach. It should not diminish his other achievements & should improve him. Remember, Klopp was relegated with Mainz. SAF ended his 2nd full #MUFC szn in 13th!…
6a) At Cardiff, he took over a squad of players that did not at all fit his intended style, had an awkward ownership situation, & was put in a relegation fight for the first ever time. Note – Cardiff’s average points before he was appointed would have seen them relegated anyway.
7) On returning to Molde, Rosenborg had established dominance, yet a sports-director of another club stated “as his team gelled, they started playing exhilarating football… despite ending 2nd, Molde were the outstanding team, playing with energy, pace, & flair” #MUFC…
7a) In both of his spells in Norway, his teams started slow & then gelled as the szn went on. This has been difficult at #MUFC due to the series of injuries to key players at most inopportune moments. Note – he also had a reputation for changing tactics successfully within games
8) As interim #MUFC coach, he demonstrated his excellent ability as a man-manager, lifting rock-bottom spirits, as well as altering tactics to pick up some big wins, before the team completely ran out of steam. Despite being asked to run MUCH more, players wanted HIM as coach…
9) Now #MUFC is in the unique position to have a very good upcoming coach, who, as a fan, is also selfless in putting the clubs interests before his own. This helps make possible the internally agreed-upon “long-term approach”. Others would see 1-3 yrs, Ole is looking beyond…
10)That’s seen Ole guide an academy revamp. Nicky Butt became “Head of 1st Team Development” to link the seniors & academy, while Nick Cox became “Head of Academy”. Recruitment intensified – #MUFC paid significant money to sign the excellent Hannibal Mejbri on Ole’s instruction..
11) Along with the aforementioned, Ole has set a consistent philosophy that now runs through #MUFC’s various age groups. This being a high-energy 4231, centred around a hard-working No.10 (which through no coincidence is Mejbri’s best position), passing out & pressing forward…
12) His selflessness & long-term thinking also mean he’s not afraid to use himself as a shield to protect #MUFC yth. Results suffered early in the szn with Martial out, but did he rush Greenwood? No! & did he only start Greenwood once he felt his work-rate matched others? Yes…
13) The growing culture is that no one is ‘too good’ to not play, if effort is not at a max. Ole comes across nice externally, but behind the #MUFC scenes he has a mean streak. Lukaku, Sanchez, Smalling (who can’t pass out from back) were all praised before being shipped out…
13a) His method of man-management is therefore to aim to install belief in his players, until their time is up. He may criticise behind the scenes, but rarely in front of the cameras

Note – comments about Alexis Sanchez today.

It is naive to take press conferences as gospel…
14) Whether it be for tactical, cultural, or technical reasons, 8 snr players have now departed #MUFC in the last year. Several more will follow, despite being praised by Ole in his “weak” press conferences, & told that they “can improve & become good enough for Utd”…
15) The current #MUFC season is decimated by injury, yet as a coach he’s significantly & undeniably improved Rashford, Fred, & McTominay, whilst also improving Lindelof (who’s improvement remains underrated) & advancing several teenagers, while integrating 3 good signings…
16) Despite a thin squad missing key components, he’s got players programmed at passing out from defence, & has now adapted to the ‘no Pogba’ problem, by figuring out how to breach low-blocks (Norwich/Newcastle/3 big 1st half chances v Burnley)
17) Contrary to opinion, he’s also changed several games – eg. instructions to Mata vs Norwich & Wolves, formation change at Sheff.Utd

Disagreeing with substitutions is subjective & easy in hindsight…
18) Despite dealing with many bad injuries, as well as the expected rebuild issues, Solskjaer has varied #MUFC tactics to take several big scalps (from playing front-foot pressing football against Jose, to the scintillating counters against Pep, & the split-forwards vs Poch)…
19) Is Ole the greatest tactician around, not right now. Does he need to be, no. Can he be good enough, absolutely. Was SAF the greatest tactician, I don’t think so. But he developed excellent on-field #MUFC coaches around him. McKenna & Carrick are both young, but talented…
Conclusion (1/2) – it’s Ole’s plan of what is required specifically for #MUFC that convinced the club he was the man. Short-term results have suffered (due to bad injuries, protecting youth, growing a young team, & some fine margins), but significant foundations have been laid…
(2/2) – Is Ole weak? Quite the contrary, many decisions have been brave & almost self-defacating for #MUFC’s long-term success & stability. Does he NEED additions to aid his philosophy? Without doubt. Does he deserve time to see the fruits of his thankless labour? Even more so.

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