According to Simon Mullock of The Mirror, Manchester United interim boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer knows the players can win him the full-time job with their impressive performances.
The report claims Solskjaer has already told the United players who have done him proud that his future rests in their hands between now and the end of the season. If the Reds finish the 2018/19 campaign strongly, the board will be almost cornered into making a decision, though there’s little point giving it to someone else if the Norwegian is able to cope with the pressures of managing the biggest club in the world.
Solskjaer must believe he can dream beyond this season by managing United next season rather than returning to Molde. So far he’s unbeaten with an impressive record in FA Cup beating both Reading and Arsenal.
But Tuesday night threw up the first bump along the way when Burnley went two goals ahead, albeit against the run of play, and the United players showed character by coming back in the final minutes, thanks to goals from Paul Pogba and Victor Lindelof.
If Solskjaer can continue to rally the players behind him and completely wins over the dressing room by May, his odds will drop further.
That will likely require a top four finish and decent run in the FA Cup, though United’s next tie in the competition is a tricky away visit to current champions Chelsea, a repeat of the 2018 final.
Solskjaer has even revealed that he is already working on plans for next season – including transfer targets – but that’s what all managers will be doing at this stage of the season, unless their focus is on avoiding relegation or a title challenge.
“This job is like a wheel spinning around,” said Solskjaer, as quoted by The Mirror. “I have to make the players perform better. If I can get the team playing better, get the players to respond to me, see the rrsults get better and show that the playing style is there, then that will be a big plus for me.
“But this has never been all about me. I’m not here to talk about myself and other so-called big-name managers. What is a big name?
“For me, it’s about how you work with the players and work with the club.
“If I had set myself targets in terms of results, I think that would have been the wrong progress. When I came in, it was about talking to the players about their performances and what we expect from the plating style.
“I knew that if we could get the playing style right, we would get enough points to be in with a shout of the top four towards the end of the season.”
United need to start planning for the future but that will only really take place once the club appoints its first director of football. Until then, we have people on the board that haven’t a clue how to run a football club unless you asked them about the commercial side of things.
It has been a good week off the pitch for United, with Anthony Martial signing a new five-year deal, Marouane Fellaini has been sold and removed from the wage bill, and talks are underway with David de Gea about a new contract.
That goes to show the impact Solskjaer is not only having on and off the pitch.