Solskjaer is not the type of person given to public self-congratulation. The Manchester United manager prefers it to be “not about him.”
It was a phenomenal week of celebrations for United as Solskjaer enjoyed “a couple of glasses of red.” It all began with the Norwegian fearing for his job if results against Spurs and Manchester City did not go his way.
However, the week ended with victories in both games. The Norwegian could reflect on a job well done.
It could be wrong to say Solskjaer has saved himself from joining Marco Silva, Sanchez Flores, Unai Emery and Mauricio Pochettino in the managerial fallout. That was not a prospect.
Solskjaer himself dismissed headlines about fearing for his job as lies. Inside Old Trafford, the feeling is that United is in the process of a rebuild. They feel the trajectory is upwards even as they acknowledge there will be difficult days.
Nonetheless, the club is certain to be sharing the same vision as their manager.
The club is committed to giving Solskjaer the time he needs to bring it to fruition.
“I have seen the improvement since I came.” Said Solskjaer.
“We have had to reshape the squad, change the culture and change the way we want to play. You can call it counter-attacking but that sounds negative. For me it is quick, attacking, flowing football with the right intent.”
“There is no intention to take it back to the keeper. We have players with pace, quality and skill. I wouldn’t want James, Lingard, Martial and Rashford running at me.”
Up in the director’s box, Ferguson enjoyed the 2-1 win at Manchester City. Seated alongside him was former chief executive, David Gill. The pair are a reminder of the club’s halcyon days.
On the other hand, the 3000 populating a corner of the Etihad’s South Stand delivered an audible “Ole, Ole, Ole, Ole.”
This was followed by “Who put the ball in the German net?” In honor of the never to be forgotten moment against Bayern Munich at the Nou Camp.
United believes they moved away from their origins during the Van Gaal and Mourinho eras. They feel Solskjaer proved himself capable of the “cultural reboot.”
Who would have thought Solskjaer would end the run by beating Mourinho and Guardiola?
When asked how it felt beating those two managerial heavyweights in the space of five days, Solskjaer said, “We had 24 hours less recovery time than both of the teams. That is a big advantage.”
At the final whistle blow, Solskjaer took Guardiola’s hand and made sure he greeted every City player in the same way before heading over to join his players in front of the supports.
However, he did not follow Rashford’s lead and jump into them or Lingard’s in taking off his shirt and throwing it their way.
He has his own method of celebration.
But he looked very happy. He had not just won. He had won in the style he wanted.”
“It is confirmation of the direction we are going.” He said.
“We looked like the Manchester United team. That is a big thing for me.”