Manchester United have announced Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as their permanent manager, with the Norwegian reportedly already drawing up serious transfer plans.
The 46-year-old has committed his future at Old Trafford with a three-year deal.
Ole stays at the wheel: Five key things to know…
- Solskjaer was appointed as Man Utd caretaker boss in December following the departure of Jose Mourinho.
- The Norwegian has won 14 of his 19 games in charge so far, guiding them to the Champions League quarter-finals.
- United won more Premier League points (32) than any other side during his caretaker spell.
- He has now been rewarded with a three-year deal as permanent manager.
- According to reports, United are targeting a massive squad overhaul in the summer that could set a new transfer record for a defender.
Solskjaer has been roundly praised for the effect he has had since becoming caretaker manager in December, losing just three of his 19 games in charge, guiding the club to the Champions League quarter-final stages and back into the hunt for a top-four spot in the Premier League.
Man Utd announced the news on Thursday with a statement on their official website which read: “Manchester United announces that current caretaker manager and former striker, Ole Gunnar Solskjær, has been appointed as the club’s full-time manager on a three-year contract.
“Solskjær scored 126 goals in 366 appearances for United between 1996 and 2007 and also managed the club’s reserve team until the end of 2010.
“He was appointed caretaker manager on 19 December 2018 and won his first eight games in charge on the way to an overall record of 14 victories and two draws in 19 games, amassing more Premier League points than any other club during that time.”
The man himself admitted he is ‘beyond excited’ to be taking up the reins on a permanent basis, describing Old Trafford as ‘home’.
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“From the first day I arrived, I felt at home at this special club,” said Solskjær.
“It was an honour to be a Manchester United player, and then to start my coaching career here.
“The last few months have been a fantastic experience and I want to thank all of the coaches, players and staff for the work we’ve done so far.
“This is the job that I always dreamed of doing and I’m beyond excited to have the chance to lead the club long-term and hopefully deliver the continued success that our amazing fans deserve.”
Solskjaer to break transfer record with squad overhaul
There is absolutely no doubting Solskjaer has worked wonders with what is one of the most limited Man Utd squads in the Premier League era, but the former striker’s attention will now immediately shift to seeking out additions to push on to the next level.
The former striker has already admitted he would have been happy to advise the club on transfer targets whether he took up a permanent position or not and as such, will already have a list of names drawn up.
According to reports, a centre-back is high on that list. Real Madrid’s Raphael Varane, Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly and Inter’s Milan Skriniar are said to be among the Red Devils’ top targets, with top sources at the club suggesting they have accepted that a record-breaking bid for a defender – £75m – will be required to bring in any of these names.
In other areas, United are reportedly targeting England starlet Jadon Sancho to replace Alexis Sanchez, who has flopped since his 2018 move from Arsenal, while Callum Hudson-Odoi and Gareth Bale are also under consideration.
The targeting of Sancho, Hudson-Odoi and Skriniar highlights a clear shift toward signing a younger crop of players, with previous boss Jose Mourinho preferring more experienced players such as the aforementioned Sanchez.