Man United fires manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer after last six league defeats

Manchester United has parted company with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as manager after a run of six league defeats this season, the latest of which saw the Red Devils lose 3-1 to Liverpool on Sunday. The news was announced by United on Tuesday and comes after a disastrous start to the season for the 20-time English champions.

British media reports said Solskjaer, who has been in the post since December 2017 after being brought in as a caretaker for the final 10 games of last season, was sacked after the 54-year-old went on a run of three losses in his first four league games in charge. United had started the campaign with three consecutive home victories, but the Champions League qualifiers have followed with Premier League losses to Leicester City, Huddersfield Town and Tottenham Hotspur.

Alexis Sanchez, Scott McTominay and Marcus Rashford all scored for Manchester United against Liverpool at Old Trafford, while Sadio Mane gave the visitors the lead before halftime. The Reds scored two late goals through Roberto Firmino and Georginio Wijnaldum to seal their third straight victory over United and move into third place in the table.

Solskjaer said in a statement released by the club that he would miss some of the club’s players on his first overseas trip, and gave his support to United captain Antonio Valencia, midfielder Paul Pogba and forward Romelu Lukaku.

“My experience of working with this group of players was really special. It really was one of the proudest moments of my career so far. They are a great bunch of lads and great professionals and it pains me to leave. I will miss so many people, who even in my wildest dreams I never thought I would meet,” he said.

United finished third in the league last season after winning the FA Cup and League Cup as Mourinho’s temper issues and constant changes of personnel came under scrutiny and led to strong criticism of the former Chelsea boss, who eventually was sacked in December.

Solskjaer, whose stunning runs of success as a player at Norwegian club Molde and Blackburn Rovers, he was given several months as caretaker manager. During that period, United won the Europa League and reached the final of the Champions League. Solskjaer returned for a permanent role in the latter part of 2017 and after replacing Mourinho, whom he had already beaten three times in the FA Cup final, saw United win the league title again.

Solskjaer won five trophies in three and a half seasons and, according to Sky Sports, had the support of the board, club owner Mike Ashley and even Mourinho. Solskjaer was the first manager to score at least 100 Premier League goals, with 90 of those coming at United, and his free-kick strikes in the final minute of stoppage time against Newcastle and Cardiff secured his side a Champions League spot.

Solskjaer’s record at United isn’t in line with the success of Louis van Gaal and Jose Mourinho, both of whom won the FA Cup and won the league in their first full seasons.

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