Manchester United chief executive Ed Woodward looks set to extend the contract of boss Ole Gunnar Solskjær according to the Telegraph. It will likely not come as a surprise to most despite the Red Devil’s failing to bring home the Europa League trophy after losing the final on penalties to Villarreal at the Polsat Plus Arena Gdańsk.
— Telegraph Football (@TeleFootball) May 27, 2021
The immediate backlash on social media was one of justifiable frustration, with many feeling as though Solskjær missed a genuine opportunity to put the clubs’ trophy drought, which is now four years in the making. Questionable timing of his substitutions and the teams’ struggle to really break down and subsequently sink Unai Emery’s Yellow Submarine was hardly viewed as acceptable despite his record in the competition.
Despite United’s failure to deliver at the final hurdle, Solskjær has taken the club forward by some measure on the domestic front since his appointment in the wake of José Mourinho and the club parting ways during the 2018-19 season. After finishing sixth in the league, the former United forward and Norwegian international guided the club back into the Champions League by finishing third in 2019-20, which he then bested this past term by ending the season in second. Though there was disappointment in the sizable gap in the table (12-points) between them and winners Manchester City, there remains a sense that the club has done well to reestablish itself on the domestic front overall under Solskjær.
With an extension expected to be for 3-years added on to the final year of his deal that is set to begin in the 2021-22 season, United is set to be led by Woodward during the expected summer reinforcement period. How the club fairs in that regard remain to be seen, as the system of “transfer by committee” featuring Woodward, Solskjær, assistant manager Mike Phelan, director of football John Murtough, and technical director Darren Fletcher, looks to continue as a collective brain trust.
Questions could be asked about the direction that will be decided on, however. Woodward will be out of his role at United at the end of 2021, and the committee has already sanctioned a deal for Donny van de Beek last summer that has crashed and burned entirely. With the club aiming to charge down City at the top of the Premier League ladder and add further silverware to their illustrious cabinet, it is vital that the club get every decision right on the money; including Solskjær’s extension.