Former Tottenham midfielder Jermaine Jenas has revealed his opinion that Manchester United made the wrong choice in appointing Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as the club’s permanent manager.
Solskjaer turns things around
Former United hitman Solskjaer was the man chosen to replace Jose Mourinho on the bench at Old Trafford late in December.
And the Norwegian subsequently went on to enjoy an absolutely superb start to life back in Manchester.
Solskjaer’s first 18 outings as United boss saw the club notch 14 wins, with the negative, defensive brand of football long-showcased by the Premier League giants under Mourinho having been replaced by a fast-paced, attractive style under the guidance of their new boss.
– 11 Games
– 10 Wins
– 25 Points (in 9 games – Mourinho 26 points all season)
– 28 goals scored
– Only 7 goals conceded
– 5 clean sheets
– Equal best start to Premier League management.
– Best EVER start for a United manager.
Ole Gunnar Solskjær
— Man Utd Empire (@Empire_Mu) February 9, 2019
Along with steering United firmly back into the hunt for a top-4 spot in the Premier League, Solskjaer also oversaw the club’s passage to the quarter-finals of the Champions League, courtesy of a historic 2nd-leg comeback at French champions PSG last month.
United’s recent struggles
The weeks since their momentous victory in Paris, however, have seen the Red Devils, and Solskjaer, brought firmly back down to earth.
United’s last 7 outings across all competitions have seen the club fall to 5 defeats.
The latest of these came on Tuesday night, when a 3-0 2nd-leg defeat at the Camp Nou saw the Red Devils deservedly ousted from the Champions League.
4 – Manchester United have lost four consecutive away matches in all competitions for the first time since October 1999 – current manager Ole Gunnar Solskjær featured in all four of those 1999 defeats. Recurrence. pic.twitter.com/OlHGuZgz5P
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) April 16, 2019
‘An emotional decision’
And one individual who feels as though the dip in form being endured by United is reflective of the mistake that the club’s board made in hiring Solskjaer on a permanent basis last month is Jermaine Jenas.
Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live, former Spurs star Jenas revealed his opinion that the board at Old Trafford should have opted for a tactician who was ready to introduce a new identity to the club, rather than one who is attempting ‘to get close to what (Sir Alex) Ferguson has done’:
‘No. I felt it was an emotional decision and in any business it should be a thought-out logical decision for the long term.’
‘One of the things they need to get away from is ‘the Manchester United way’ and ‘that’s not the way they used to do it’. What Sir Alex Ferguson did was very unique and United have found it very difficult to replicate with some of the best managers in the world.’
‘Pep Guardiola going to Manchester City didn’t say ‘what did Mancini and Pellegrini do to win the league?’ He came in and did what he wanted to do.’
‘Jurgen Klopp did that at Liverpool, he had his own style. That’s what United need. I don’t think they need to try and find someone who can get close to what Ferguson has done. They need to find [a new identity]. Mourinho tried to do that but the club didn’t buy into it.’
‘I don’t think they know what they’re doing.’