Manchester United: Rio Ferdinand not expecting ‘knee-jerk’ reaction over Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s job

Manchester United have taken a single point from their last three Premier League games and the manager has come in for criticism.

Pa Sport Staff
Monday 18 October 2021 19:01
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (Mike Egerton/PA)
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (Mike Egerton/PA)

Rio Ferdinand believes public criticism from Paul Pogba suggests there is “underlying frustration” at Manchester United but does not expect a “knee-jerk” reaction regarding the future of manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

United have taken a single point from their last three Premier League games following Saturday’s chastening 4-2 loss at Leicester, prompting intense scrutiny of Solskjaer’s position.

Midfielder Pogba admitted the defeat at the King Power Stadium was deserved, while attributing it to long-standing issues and a lack of maturity.

Rio Ferdinand won six Premier League titles with Manchester United (John Walton/PA)

Former United defender Ferdinand feels the France international’s comments are concerning and “pose questions” about the current mood at the club.

“It doesn’t sit well with me. If I was in a changing room and a team-mate had said that, I wouldn’t be happy, I’ve got to be honest,” Ferdinand told the Vibe With Five podcast.

“I’d be straight in, saying: ‘What does that mean? I don’t quite understand what you’re saying,’ unless I actually agree.

“Pogba’s an honest guy, that’s what I like about Paul. He’s very passionate, wants to win, wants to be the best he can be.

Normally you get bog-standard answers (to interview questions) but he's said a few things there that pose questions.

Rio Ferdinand on Paul Pogba

“And that says to me that there’s an underlying frustration within the camp and he can’t hide it. He’s not hiding it.

“Normally you get bog-standard answers (to interview questions) but he’s said a few things there that pose questions.”

United have improved their league position each year since Solskjaer replaced Jose Mourinho in the Old Trafford dugout in December 2018.

Expectations were high going into the new season following a headline-grabbing summer transfer window which brought the arrivals of Cristiano Ronaldo, Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane.

Pressure is building on Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (Mike Egerton/PA)

With United currently five points behind leaders Chelsea, Ferdinand feels former team-mate Solskjaer will remain in the role until at least the end of the season but must win silverware to continue beyond that.

“There’s been gradual improvement every year he’s been here and the squad shape and the mould of the squad looks better than when he took over – that’s all perfect,” said Ferdinand.

“This season now is Ole’s squad. This season he will be judged.

“He’s got to go and win something and show improvement again. I think if he doesn’t, he’s going to be on a chopping board.

I think he will get to the end of this season and then it will be a cut-throat decision.

Rio Ferdinand on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

“But I don’t think the club will have a knee-jerk reaction now. He’s done enough to warrant finishing this season and then see where you are. I think that’s what will be the case.

“There will be people saying: ‘Get rid of him now,’ that’s the culture today.

“I think he will get to the end of this season and then it will be a cut-throat decision.

“Either: ‘Yes, you’ve done well enough to stay again, you’ve stabilised what we’re doing and we’re on that journey still to where we want to get to’.

“Or: ‘We’re now further away than we were before, you’ve regressed, thank you very much, see you later’.”

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged in