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Is Solskjær the main problem at Manchester United?
Oct 28, 2021, 4:49:00 AM

Is Solskjær the main problem at Manchester United?

After being tapped as one of the top title contenders in the 2021-22 Premier League season, Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s Manchester United squad is having a rough time. With this tough season, Ole is under the pressure of losing his job midway through the season.

Man United is one of the deepest squads in the Premier League. The only teams that can come close are Chelsea and Manchester City. Both of those teams are true title contenders while Man United is wallowing away in the upper half’s middle ground.

They are hovering over the sixth spot which is disappointing considering that Man United finished second in the 2020-21 season. Ole’s tactics have been questioned because he has struggled against weaker teams.

When they play against the top teams, they are a mixed bag because they get shut down at times and when they play some weaker squads, they stumble. This is worrying because Ole is under pressure since he can’t motivate the team enough to perform better and rally around his tactics.

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The tactics are a big issue

When you look at the players in the United squad, you might think that they are an uber-attacking side. Unfortunately, they have become an even more stale squad in the 2021-22 season. With the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Mason Greenwood, and Bruno Fernandes in the squad, you should expect goals galore but they have struggled on offence.

The defensive side of the team has been shambolic, to say the least, because they have struggled without Raphaël Varane over the past few weeks. He and Harry Maguire are solid options on defence but their health struggles have been an issue. They can’t play together consistently which has led to an uneven defence with Eric Bailly and/or Victor Lindelöf.

These issues on both sides of the pitch boil down to Ole and his tactics. Injuries are a part of the game and coaches need to adjust to what’s happening on the pitch. Ole has been a stubborn coach during his United tenure and that has been further exposed this season with his lack of adjustments.

The team needs a big change and the first piece to fall might be Ole’s removal from his post. However, he is still in the manager’s seat until further notice.

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Sacking Ole is not the only needle-moving action

If and when Man United sack Ole, they will have to sign a new coach who will have a brand new system. If they have championship aspirations this season, they will struggle if they sack Ole because the players will be unfamiliar with the system. However, there is also a precedent for this move because Chelsea did the same back in the 2020-21 season.

The Blues ended up winning the Champions League against Man City. While it’s not guaranteed that someone like Antonio Conte will fix the club’s issues, it will be a fresh start for this United squad. It will be difficult to repair the club’s problems but Conte might just be the man.

In the meantime, Man United and the front office have told Ole to stay put because they still believe in him somewhat. However, his time might come to an end soon if the losses keep piling up. It will be a disappointing ending to Ole’s time with the club as a manager.

This is still a shaky situation with many moving parts but most fans believe sacking him is the right move.

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Words: Cholo Martin

Image: PA