Analysis: For Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Manchester United, a new season = a new start

Having failed to qualify for the Champions League, Manchester United have accepted that this just wasn’t their season. 

It looked more positive after caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer took the helm, but there simply was not enough time to recover to the degree that would have been needed to climb higher up the table.

However, now that the permanent appointment has been confirmed Solskjaer is keen to look forward to the future and build a team that can bring his beloved club back to the top as reports.

It seems he is planning a recruitment reboot and has very strong views on how this will happen.

He has made it clear that he is going to be where the buck stops and will be making decisions for himself.

This is a luxury that was not afforded to former manager Jose Mourinho who had to put up with the recruitment department making the final call.

Having met at length with Ed Woodward, the executive vice-chairman, accompanied by Mike Phelan, his assistant manager, it seems clear that they are okay with leaving the reins in his hands.

There have also been round-table meetings with the big chiefs and, speaking to the media, Solskjaer gave the public a hint of what they could expect for next season.

“I’ll have the final say if a player comes in or goes out. And we’ve got regular meetings. I’m happy with the way it’s going, and we’re supposed to sign 250 players because you’re all writing about players we should sign, so hopefully, we can get players in you have written about as well.

“So you never know. In the long-term planning, we have to think about [the Champions League]. You’d be surprised how many agents have been touting their players.  Not touting, that’s not the best word, is it? Telling us their players, their clients would love to be a part of Man United in the future.

“And that’s just the lure of Man United: they know, the potential and size of the club, they know in the end that we will get back to the good days.”

Given the last few years’ performances it is clear that things do need to change, but he is not worried about attracting top-flight players from all over the world. The Norwegian is happy that his team are still one of the most wanted when it comes to up-and-coming stars looking to get into English football.

“We’re having a tough time at the moment. In the last few seasons, we’ve not gone up to the standards we expect, but it’s up to the club and me to change it as quickly as possible.

“If it’s a season without Champions League, who knows. But players still want to come to Man United, and you wouldn’t be surprised by the names that you get asked.”

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