Date published: Saturday 7th November 2020 7:19
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer insists he is planning for the long-term at Manchester United and is calm in the wake of claims he could be replaced by Mauricio Pochettino.
The former Tottenham manager is once again being linked with the Old Trafford hotseat. That comes with Solskjaer under renewed pressure in the wake of successive defeats to Arsenal and Istanbul Basaksehir.
Indeed, the manner of which United conceded the first in Turkey left one pundit to compare them to an Under-10s side.
To make matters worse, Ian Wright has explained why star man Bruno Fernandes will likely prove Solskjaer’s undoing.
Solskjaer though is dealing with it all in his stride.
The 1999 treble hero understands better than most about the pressures and expectations that come with being at the “best and the biggest club in the world”.
He insists he remains calm amid a growing storm.
“Of course you can enjoy it,” he said of the job. “I am not happy being under pressure, as you say.
“The pressure of leading, of managing Man United is a pressure that you have got to have strong shoulders and a strong head to carry. But it’s also the same way the other way.
“I’ve never really (been) in too dark a place. When I’m not playing well or when the team is not doing well, I don’t get too carried away.
“You have got to have a consistency in the way we communicate with the players, work with the players because it’ll be too much reacting.
“We still have a plan in place and you’re proactive and you continue that plan.
“Of course some results and performances need a different reaction to what maybe you’ve planned.”
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Solskjaer knows he has Woodward trust
United have tended to react well to setbacks under Solskjaer. That will also be important if they are to quieten talk over a potential move for former Tottenham boss Pochettino.
Yet the Norwegian appears unruffled by growing speculation linking the Argentine with his job.
He also remains confident he has the backing of executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward and the club hierarchy.
“I am going to say that all my conversations with the club have been planning long term,” said Solskjaer.
“Of course we want results short-term but I’ve had positive, good dialogue, open dialogue with the plans that we’ve put in place.
“We’ve planted a seed, the tree is growing.
“Some clubs just rip up that tree and see if it’s still growing and see if it’s still getting water underneath.
“For me, I’ve had a backing all the way since I’ve come in on a bigger picture – and the club needs to look at the bigger picture.
“We can’t go thinking or react to one or two results. You’ve got to look maybe further back and what’s the direction we go in.”
Solskjaer also feels “the culture and the mentality in the group has improved immensely” during his time in charge.
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