Talk SPORT pundit Craig Burley believes Manchester United made a crazy decision to appoint Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as the permanent manager before the end of the campaign. The Norwegian was initially appointed by the club on an interim basis in mid-December, and the club’s transformation over the course of the next three months convinced the board to appoint him as the permanent head coach.
He said: “The decision to give Solskjaer the job full-time, I think it’s a crazy, crazy decision, particularly now before the end of the season. I’m not just saying this now after that game, because I’ve said it before. Manchester United are one of the biggest clubs in the world and, on the evidence of what we’ve seen recently, they need a massive rebuilding job to be fighting back with Liverpool and Man City. To give the job to someone who is so inexperienced, with a so-so managerial record become he arrived, that’s not got ‘long-term strategy’ written all over it to me, that’s got ‘sentimental claptrap to appease fans’ written all over it.”
United had barely put a foot wrong during the opening three months under Ole but things have changed over the past few weeks where the defensive vulnerability has been quite visible. This has hampered the team’s performances with three defeats from the previous four matches and the recent league loss at Wolverhampton Wanderers should hurt the most.
United are currently playing catch up to the top four with a two-point deficit but the gap could extend further with fourth-placed Arsenal having a game in hand. Ole’s next challenge with United comes in the Champions League where they are scheduled to host Barcelona for the opening leg of the quarter-final stage.