Man Utd’s interest in Gareth Southgate as pressure mounts on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
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Manchester United’s draw with Everton on Saturday has increased the pressure on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. The Norwegian is quickly reaching crisis point at Old Trafford, just weeks after the blockbuster return of Cristiano Ronaldo. And, if the Red Devils are forced into sacking him, it’s possible they’ll renew their interest in England boss Gareth Southgate.
It has been a bizarre start to the season for United.
Until recently, they were in fine form – with the return of Ronaldo lifting the club and everybody associated with it.
However, United have now failed to win three of their last five matches and, on Saturday, slumped to another disappointing result against Everton.
Solskjaer, now, is facing a big test of his credentials. Especially with big matches against the likes of Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City soon on the horizon.
Currently, it has to be said that United aren’t planning on pulling the trigger. In their eyes, he’s still the right man for the job.
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But Solskjaer can’t continue like this. United can’t, either.
Arguably for the first time since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement, the Red Devils have a strong squad. Arguably one of the strongest on the planets.
Simply put, they have to be better. Solskjaer has done well so far but, with the players he now has, it’s crunch time.
And, if he fails, it’s possible they’ll renew their interest in England boss Southgate.
When he was appointed as Sam Allardyce’s replacement, questions were asked. Was a man who failed at Middlesborough really the right man to bring football home?
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Of course, he’s yet to steer England to glory. But there’s no denying the Three Lions are drastically better than years gone by.
In the winter of 2019, the Daily Mail claimed that United were interested in hiring Southgate as a replacement for Jose Mourinho.
Mourinho had won two trophies at Old Trafford just 18 months previously but, after sucking the life out of the place, was relieved of his duties.
And Southgate, after steering England to the semi finals of the World Cup, was considered to replace him.
In the end, of course, United named Solskjaer as their new manager instead.
He got the job after impressing on an interim basis, helping to bring the Red Devils together again following the chaos of the Mourinho era.
And Southgate, in the time that has passed, has established himself as one of Europe’s most-respected coaches.
He came within a penalty shootout of guiding England to Euro 2020 glory this summer, with the Three Lions going on to lose to Italy.
And if Solskjaer can’t get his United team firing, it’s possible the Glazers will renew their interest in Southgate.
He’s unlikely to be the only manager linked with the job, either.
United thought about hiring Mauricio Pochettino in 2019 as well and have long admired the Argentine.
With Pochettino currently at Paris Saint-Germain, where he’s in charge of Lionel Messi, Neymar and Kylian Mbappe, it’s questionable whether he’d want to take the job at Old Trafford.
Antonio Conte is available, having left Inter Milan back in the summer.
But with the Italian famed for his defensive style of coaching, that would be a risk for the United board.
And while Zinedine Zidane has also been linked in the past, it’s likelier the Frenchman will take a job elsewhere in Europe instead.
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