It is hard to understand why Manchester United have not yet sacked manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer after the first team’s dismal start to the season.
It has been reported by Fabrizio Romano that the decision lies with controlling shareholder Joel Glazer, and while the much reviled oligarch is known to not be a football man, he can hardly be described as a bad businessman. And, on a business level just as much as a football one, endangering the club by not taking action makes no sense at all.
Three days after derby defeat, there are still no contacts between Manchester United board and other managers. No talks. 🚫🔴 #MUFC
Ole Gunnar Solskjær still supported by main part of board members. Joel Glazer only one who can change the situation – but there’s still no signal. pic.twitter.com/0nxdW56KrJ
If Solskjaer stays in place, United could crash out of this season’s Champions League, costing the club a minimum of €9.6 million (prize for qualifying for the knockout stages) plus extra TV and sponsorship revenues, to a maximum of €52.7 million plus TV and sponsorship revenues (total prize money for winning team).
In addition, if United fail to finish in the top four of the Premier League, it would immediately cost around €16 million plus TV and sponsorship revenues for next season.would immediately cost around €16 million plus TV and sponsorship revenues for next season.
Arguably even more worrying is the mass exodus that United could face if Solskjaer stays in post.
Paul Pogba is holding out on signing a new contract and is likely to leave at the end of the season when his current deal expires. Regardless of current form and fans’ opinions on the World Cup winner, the fact is that he is an asset worth at least €60 – €70 million and Glazer would surely not want to lose that amount of money unnecessarily.
There is now even talk that Cristiano Ronaldo is unhappy at the club under Solskjaer and could also seek a move away. This would be the biggest commercial blow of all were he to leave at the end of the season.
Edinson Cavani, Dean Henderson and Donny van de Beek are all rumoured to be looking for moves away in January and whilst the club does not need to grant those requests, dressing room harmony could deteriorate even further should they be held against their will.
Anthony Martial is another name linked with a move away.
There are other commercial outcomes of United’s poor performances. Gate revenues and megastore income will take a hit and it will be harder to attract sponsorsGate revenues and megastore income will take a hit and it will be harder to attract sponsors. The first team training kit remains unsponsored since the HUT Group pulled out of a new deal at the last minute in the summer following the #GlazersOut protests.
We have heard stories of how the Glazers like Solskjaer because he is a ‘yes man’, easily manipulated, how outgoing executive vice chairman Ed Woodward does not want the sacking to be his final act, and how the club have been caught off-guard without a suitable replacement.
But the fact is that the club is now bleeding money as well as leaking goals and none of those reasons would compensate for the commercial impact that continuing to flog this dead horse will have.
And, no matter what Glazer’s understanding of football is, his understanding of the bottom line surely means he must and will act sooner rather than later.
Kevin De Bruyne Opens Up On How Manchester City Prepared For Manchester United Game
The Blues completely outplayed their local rivals from start to finish in one of the most one-sided Manchester derbies in living memory last weekend.
With just seven minutes on the clock, City took the lead thanks to a comical own goal from Eric Bailly.
The Citizens continued to dominate in large spells and just before the half-time whistle, Bernardo Silva made it 2-0 as United struggled to contain the threat of De Bruyne and co.
It was a straightforward affair at Old Trafford for Guardiola’s men, who completed 753 passes throughout the tie – the most any team has completed in a Premier League match against United since the 2003-04 campaign.
So how did they prepare for such a dominant performance? Well, midfielder Kevin de Bruyne claims manager Pep Guardiola didn’t know how United were going to play, so stopped Friday’s training session after just 10 minutes.
“The day before a game we usually train tactically, based on how the opponent play,” he told the MIDMID podcast on Youtube.
“Before United, Pep said: ‘We don’t know how they are going to play. We shall see’. And we stopped training after 10 minutes or so.
“Often Pep knows how the opponent is going to play. This time he didn’t know, so he didn’t know what to do.
“We have done what we always do, but he didn’t know beforehand if they would play with 5 at the back. With four. A diamond in the middle. With 3 upfront.”
Despite the lack of training session before visiting Old Trafford, Pep Guardiola’s side hardly broke sweat in the game and dominated from the off.
Thoughts on De Bruyne’s comments? Is this the reality behind Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s tactics?
Steven Gerrard’s Perfect Response To Sir Alex Ferguson Saying He Wasn’t ‘A Top, Top Player’
In his 2013 autobiography, Fergie wrote: “I’m one of the few who felt Gerrard was not a top, top player.”
The Liverpool legend was asked about those surprising comments during an appearance on The Clare Balding Show a few years back and admitted he was “a little but gutted” but “won’t sleep lose over it”.
He also revealed that he once had a trial as a youngster and Fergie later made an attempt to bring him to Manchester United when he was a first-teamer.
“I went on trial at Manchester United when I was 13 and had a letter off them wanting to sign me on a seven-year-deal,” Gerrard said on the BT Sport show.
“I’m a huge fan of Alex Ferguson and what he’s done in the game is fantastic, that’s the reason why he’s sold that many copies in the first week. I was genuinely a little bit gutted when I read that, the reaction of the papers, when he said I’m not a top, top player. But I won’t lose sleep over it, everyone is entitled to their opinion.
“He tried to sign me in early 2002/03, he tried to sign me again to play for United, I obviously refused, so I can’t really take it to heart too much. But I’m a bit gutted because I’m a big fan of his.”
Gerrard will be hoping he can emulate that on-pitch success in the dugout in his first Premier League job.
The 41-year-old replaces Dean Smith at Villa Park and has left Scottish Premiership champions Rangers.
A reported compensation package of between £3 million-£4 million has been agreed with Rangers for Gerrard and his assistant Gary McAllister.
Gerrard said: “Aston Villa is a club with a rich history and tradition in English football and I am immensely proud to become its new Head Coach.
“In my conversations with Nassef [Sawiris], Wes [Edens] and the rest of the Board, it was apparent how ambitious their plans are for the club and I am looking forward to helping them achieve their aims.
“I would like to express my sincere gratitude to everybody associated with Glasgow Rangers for giving me the opportunity to manage such an iconic football club.
“Helping them secure a record-breaking 55th league title will always hold a special place in my heart. I would like to wish the players, staff and supporters the very best for the future.”
Premier League announces dates for 2022/23 season
The Premier League has confirmed the beginning and end dates for the 2022/23 campaign.
The calendar has been adjusted to accommodate the 2022 World Cup, which takes place in Qatar in the middle of the domestic season.
Details of how long club football will pause for have also been revealed.
Next season will begin on 6 August 2022, around a week earlier than usual.
The sixteenth set of fixtures will take place over the weekend of 12-13 November, before the Premier League begins its hiatus ahead of the international call-up period commencing on Monday 14 November.
The World Cup itself begins the following week, on 21 November, and runs until Sunday 18 December 2022, when the final will be played.
The Premier League will resume eight days later on Boxing Day and then draw to a close on Sunday 28 May 2023, when all the games will, as usual, kick off simultaneously.
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