Another season starting with uncertainty surrounding the hotseat at the Red side of Manchester has become a reoccurrence in recent years. This year has been no different with Manchester United enduring a dismal start to their campaign with Ole Gunnar Solskjær coming under scrutiny.
Manchester United’s start to this season is synonymous with a coin. Both having two sides as the Red Devils have looked like two different sides domestically and continentally barring a couple of discrepancies.
They had a shocking start in the Premier League which consisted of an opening day loss to Crystal Palace, a humiliating loss at the hand of Spurs and a demoralizing loss to Arsenal which all coincidentally were at home. However, they have looked like a whole different side in the Champions League. After being paired in the ‘Group of Death’ alongside PSG, RB Leipzig and Istanbul Başakşehir, nobody expected United to be at the top of the group at any point of time. Before a shocking loss to Istanbul, they defeated PSG away from home and hammered RB Leipzig at home which has made the biggest problem at United visible i.e. consistency.
Despite some under-par performances from a couple of big players, Ole Gunnar Solskjær has come under scrutiny for his lack of backup plans coupled with stubbornness to stick with his preferred players despite putting in lackluster performances regularly. While admittedly after his appointment United’s style of football has improved from before, he lacks the tactical depth to cope with teams when his side is being outplayed on the pitch.
Another reason which has caused an uproar among the fans and critics is his usage of summer signing Donny Van de Beek. Despite being clear that his side lacks a box-to-box midfielder and with Paul Pogba out of form, he consistently sticks with either the Frenchmen or Scott McTominay which has enraged their fans. As if all the criticism was not enough, a certain Mauricio Pochettino came out and stated that he is itching to get back into management.
With many high-profile managers being linked with the Red Devils’ hot seat, Pochettino has emerged as the frontrunner for the job. But it will not be all easy as the blue side of Manchester is also looking for life after Guardiola, with Pochettino the favourite for that job too. Recent reports have also come up stating United’s board has been in contact with the Argentinian for a long time regarding the manager seat at Old Trafford.
Recent history suggests that Solskjær has always performed well whenever he’s put under pressure. But with the availability of several high-profile managers, Manchester United’s board may be running out of patience with Ole due to the recurrence of these under pressure situations.
However, Ole has always shown that he will not go down without a fight performing considerably well under high-pressure situations. But with Pochettino certainly not lacking any suitors, Manchester United are in a pickle as to whether back their current manager or appoint a hungry and proven manager with experience at top-level football.
All the same, one thing is certain; this manager merry-go round will continue until the start of next season.