Manchester United set to face Mourinho’s and Pep Guardiola’s side, Tottenham and Man City over the week and head into those demanding fixtures on the back of another poor perfomance
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer have only two options left, either to convience his doubters that they are not right to judge his position as Red devil’s Coach or he will prove them right once and fo all by showing them he is no equal to the task.
There are tough games around the corner, as Ole’s squad are to face the Jose Mouinho’s side Tottenham at Old Trafford on Wednesday before a short trip for a Manchester derby match on Saturday to face Man City.
Each of the game is very important to United, not only on their ambitions to contest for the Champions League places in the Premier League – already a near-impossibility given their 9th place vantage point after their Sunday’s draw with Aston Villa at Old Trafford, but on Solskjaer’s grip on power.
He is going to prepare his team not just to avoid loosing in both matches, but also play well to stand a chance of beign the long-term solution, to showcase that he has some kind of positive influence over how they play.
As it is now, United are not doing well, week to week, game to game, minute to minute. And far from standing up against Spurs and City, they are still struggling in the arguments with the Premier League’s lesser lights, a cohort to which now they must surely belong.
The ex-Manchester United boss, Jose Mourinho’s down-talk about the club when still in charge had been seen now at the time as a way to secure his own work from been scruntinized and to preserve his reputation. But he wasn’t wrong at all. This is a disaster, It wasn’t Jose fault, nor is it all Solskjaer’s fault, but there is little question that there are better managers out there and not least the man sacked by Spurs to make way for Mourinho – Mauricio Pochettino.
Aston Villa were stroking it around during the first half in particular, with Ole’s Men unable to avoid the one-twos and forward runs. The visitors survived the loss of their winger, Anwar El Ghazi, who made assist for their first goal.
However, United were repeatedly disjointed. Their forwards were not able to hold up the ball or turn. They lack a true centre-forward which is exposed in games like this. The United striker Anthony Martial could not effectively do the heavy lifting, like a Wesley can at the other end.
It could have been much worse for united had Grealish not been narrowly judged to be offside in the run-up to a succesful strike at goal by Douglas Luiz. They didn’t deserve their equaliser but the goal which made the game 2-1 came during their nest spell of play.
Man Utd are about to face two showdowms which will define Ole’s tenure. He is in charge of a club that find it difficult to score from an open play at their home game agaist Aston Villa, a team just promoted to EPL and had lost all their away match this season except one. It’s not good enough, it’s not encouraging at at all.
Solskjaer’s squad posseses the uncanny ability to make every team they play perform well, and look good. It is Mourinho’s Tottenham and Guardiola’s Man City around the corner.
So it could be Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s Endgame.