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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: 9 Lesser-Known Facts About The Man United Manager!

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer‘s role was mainly focused on devastating bench exits, as he was known for being kind of an underdog who was good at substitutions. Let’s learn more about the fearsome striker with unfailing composure, and the legendary manager of many football clubs: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Who Is Ole Gunnar Solskjær? 9 Things About The Norwegian Football Manager! 

1. Successor to Mourinho in 2018:

Former Manchester United striker Ole Gunnar Solskjær had been appointed manager following the dismissal of José Mourinho. Today in 2022, he seems to be linked up with Roy Keane!

2. Mind blowing statistics in Norway:

Born in the small town of Kristiansund, in western Norway, Ole Gunnar Solskjær has made a name for himself in his native country. Between the ages of 17 and 21, he scored 115 goals in 109 matches with the Clausenengen club, in the 3rd, and then 2nd division. 

The center-forward then played in Molde, in the 1st division, where he maintained impressive figures for two years (50 matches, 40 goals). Before joining Manchester United in 1996, at the age of 23. In selection, he totals 67 caps for 23 achievements.

3. He was nicknamed the Baby-faced assassin: 

With 29 goals, the Baby-faced assassin has become after more than 10 seasons the player who has scored the most goals when starting a game as a substitute. 

It all started in 1996 when club officials eyed Alan Shearer. Inaccessible, it is finally a Norwegian at the height of his 23 years and unknown to the general public who signs with the Red Devils from Molde FK for 1.5 million euros. 

1 month later, Solskjaer is already entering the record books. Initially a substitute, he made his debut in a match where United was down 1-2 against Blackburn Rovers. It will only take him 7 short minutes to score his first goal and allow his team to get the 2-2 draw. That day he became the first player in history to score a goal off the bench on his debut at the club. The record after one season is promising and Solskjaer piles up the goals to bring his total to 19 achievements in 46 games including 18 in 33 Premier League games which he will win at the end of the season. It is from there that his nickname “Baby-faced assassin” is put forward by the British media. 

3. The “Super-sub” of Norway:

In the English language, a “substitute” is a substitute. Fortunately for Solskjær, the talented footballer quickly made a name for himself as a “super-sub” at Manchester United, where he played between 1996 and 2007. 

In a league match at Nottingham Forest in February 1999, the Norwegian came on in the 72nd minute with Manchester leading 4-1. Final score: 8-1 with a quadruple from Solskjær in the space of 12 minutes. But his greatest feat remains his winning goal in added time in the 1999 Champions League final against Bayern Munich (2-1). Led 1-0 throughout the match, Man U reversed the steam by Sheringham (90th + 1) then Solskjær (90th + 3), both entered during the match.

4. Norwegian wife:

With his Norwegian wife, Silje, the footballer lived in Bramhall during his time as a player for Manchester United. 

5. His son prefers Wayne Rooney: 

Ole Gunnar Solskjær had three children with his wife, Silje. Among them is their eldest son Noah who has developed a certain passion for football. But in the mid-2000s, the Norwegian revealed he wasn’t even his son’s favorite player. The lucky winner is his Manchester United teammate, Wayne Rooney. It is true that the former England international (120 caps, 53 goals) had put the United Kingdom at their feet when he hatched at Everton in 2002, at just 17 years old. Rooney joined United in 2004 for 31 million euros.

6. A career end, caused by injuries: 

We can consider that Ole Gunnar Solskjær was no longer with his career in 2003 since the future coach  had a final burst during the 2006-2007 season, the last of his career. 

Seriously injured in the knee in September of this year, he stayed away from the pitch for 5 months. But he had to be operated on again in the summer of 2004, forcing him to miss the entire following season. Nevertheless, the fans have continued to show him affection, eagerly awaiting his return. It’s a safe bet that Old Trafford will be thrilled to see their legendary sticker again! 

7. Coaching career: 

After his jubilee at Old Trafford in August 2008, one could say that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. Solskjær does not lack experience, he converted to the coaching profession in 2008 a year after his retirement and was already passing his diplomas in 2006. However, he does not have the baggage at the highest level of an Antonio Conte or a Zinedine Zidane. After two seasons coaching the Manchester United reserves, he took charge of his former club, Molde, where he won the first two league titles in the club’s history (2011, 2012). 

8. Manchester United:

Solskjaer signed his final contract with Manchester United on 31 March 2006, with a clause to allow him to develop his coaching skills. He also played an ambassadorial role for the club when he traveled to Hong Kong in 2006 and played with Manchester United’s Hong Kong Football School students. When interviewed by Setanta Sports in August 2007, Solskjaer confirmed that he was studying to become a coach once he retired from professional football and received the necessary badges after his final season with Manchester United. After his retirement, Solskjaer worked with Sir Alex Ferguson at Old Trafford, coaching the first team forwards for the remainder of the 2007–08 season. 

As announced on 20 May 2008, he took over the Manchester United Reserves during the summer of 2008. Solskjaer was United’s first permanent reserve team manager since 2006, taking over from Brian McClure and Jimmy Ryan, who had been acting as caretaker managers. He won the Lancashire Senior Cup by beating Liverpool Reserves 3–2 in the final. 

On 12 May 2010, Solskjaer won his first Manchester Senior Cup by beating Bolton Wanderers 1–0 at Reebok. 

Shortly after Åge Hareide resigned as manager of the Norwegian national team, Solskjaer was offered the opportunity to take over the Norwegian national team; he turned it down, saying that it was not yet the right time for him to become Norway’s coach. Solskjaer’s last game as Manchester United Reserves manager was a 5–1 win over Newcastle United on 16 December 2010. 

Molde:

On 9 November 2010, Solskjaer signed a four-year contract with Norwegian club Molde to take over as manager at the club, where he played before moving to Manchester United. Solskjaer continued to be the manager of Manchester United’s reserves until January 2011, when he took over from Molde for the start of the new season. 

Cardiff:

He offered himself a sad parenthesis in Cardiff in 2014, failing to keep the club in the Premier League. At the end of the Championship, the team was relegated to the Football League Championship. He also started the following club guide season, but the parties were separated on September 18 after only 2 wins and 3 losses with the team in seventeenth place. 

Back To Molde and Manchester United:

On October 21, 2015 he then returned to Molde, where he extended his contract again on December 3 until 2021 taking charge of Erling Moe. 

After signing a contract valid for the next three and a half years, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer lost the championship in sixth place. The following season their team was eliminated in the sixth round of the Norway Cup by Stjørdals-Blink and ended fifth in the championship match. 

On December 29, 2016 leaving the role of the coaching duo Mark Dempsey – Erling Moe, Ole suggested that he would need to sign a new contract with Molde if he were to return. 

On 22 December 2018, Solskjaer’s first game in charge of United was against his former club, Cardiff City. During this match, it wasn’t the nail biting rivalry we expected because the Red Devils recorded a convincing 5–1 away win in Wales.

9. Manchester United’s Norwegian coach left in 2021:

On 20 November 2021, after losing 4–1 to Watford and conceding 15 goals in their last five league fixtures, it was reported the club’s board of directors held an emergency meeting and decided to sack and part ways with Solskjær and label the departure of Solskjær as mutual consent. 

On 21 November, Manchester United confirmed that Solskjær had left his role as manager. The heavy defeat of the Red Devils on the lawn of Watford was too much for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. 

The Norwegian, in office since December 2018 and under contract until 2024, paid a disappointing start to the season for his team, seventh in the Premier League with already five losses on the clock and a negative goal difference (-1), and which has only taken four points from its last seven Championship matches. 

Manchester United were seventh in the Premier League table with 17 points after 12 games at the time of his departure.

The name of his successor was First-team coach and former player Michael Carrick (as caretaker). More concretely to replace Solskjaer: Ralf Rangnick was appointed as interim manager.

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