The biggest question around Old Trafford is who will be full-time manager at Manchester United next season?
When José Mourinho initially got the sack on December 18, Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino was the clear front runner. He was most people’s first choice but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s work as caretaker manager has turned several heads.
The Norwegian has won all of his eight games in charge – including away fixtures at Arsenal and Spurs – which has saw the conversation shift in his favour. Now people are considering Solskjaer for the job.
He hasn’t put a foot wrong since coming in and we don’t think anyone imagined such a turnaround following his temporary appointment.
Moreover, it’s been a difficult spell for Pochettino down in London.
Successive defeats to Chelsea and Crystal Palace ended their hopes of winning a piece of silverware this season, with nobody stupid enough to consider them outsiders for the UEFA Champions League.
That means Pochettino’s managerial career will continue to drag on without winning a single trophy; something that must change if he’s going to be linked with every big job going, like he has done in recent years.
After FA Cup elimination, Pochettino argued that Spurs priority is not winning cups but finishing in the Premier League top four.
“We are going to create a debate that to win a trophy is going to help the club. I don’t agree with that. That only builds your ego,” the Spurs manager said, as quoted by the Guardian.
“In reality the most important thing is being consistently in the top four and playing in the Champions League. That is going to help the club to achieve the last step.
“The club is doing fantastically well. It’s so successful. In the last four or five years we’ve been fighting in different ways to achieve what the club needs, to be in the level of Chelsea, United, City, Arsenal or Liverpool. People wish we could win some trophies. But, being realistic, we are a team not built to win titles still.”
Pochettino reacts to Spurs getting knocked out of the League Cup & FA Cup
“Our season is still on track” pic.twitter.com/hl90KiYOQ9
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) January 28, 2019
Pochettino’s comments sparked a reaction and had United fans talking. They simply did not resemble a United manager by any means.
A United manager must be reckless when it comes to winning trophies rather than worried about egos.
It’s a ridiculous excuse to use the ego line and it will hardly give the players a boost knowing that’s how the manager views cup success when Spurs are no closer to lifting Premier League titles.
On Monday, in his press conference before United take on Burnley, Solskjaer offered a more fitting view on winning silverware… from a United perspective, arguably pushing himself further forward for the full-time job. (Quotes from The Times)
“If you win trophies, that’s a fantastic day for everyone in the club. The best time of your life is that day when you win because you never know when the next one is going to come.
“[Sir Alex Ferguson] always said whatever trophy you win, you have just got to enjoy it. It’s not up to me to discuss whatever anyone else says, I am just saying that we here at this club, we are looking to win trophies.”
It’s clear from the way he talks, Ferguson had an ever-lasting influence on Solskjaer which he has carried into his coaching career, and United have immediately seen the benefits.
He’s talking the talk, but more importantly, Ole is walking the walk. Hopefully we can end the season with a top four finish and some silverware to celebrate.