Solskjaer: It's not all about me
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer insists that he's very much his own man but cannot take all the credit for Manchester United's resurgence during his time as caretaker manager so far.
Solskjaer acknowledged the assistance that he's received from others at the Aon Training Complex, including his staff and former manager, Sir Alex Ferguson, when he spoke to the media prior to Sunday's game at Leicester City.
“I'm not here to talk about myself,” Ole said, when asked by reporters in his pre-match press conference about the qualities required to manage United.
“It's about how you work with the players, how you work for the club, so you've got to manage for the club. It's not about me at all.”
What we expect from Leicester awayVideo
“Sir Alex has been to the training ground a couple of times,” Solskjaer added.
“I always make sure I go and visit him after every game in his lounge at Old Trafford and it's great to see him at the games, because he's well, he's healthy.
”It's just great to have a little football chat with him and his friends after every game. We don't speak every week on the phone, of course, but we keep bumping into each other at the stadium.
Since taking over in December, Solskjaer has been accompanied in the dugout by first-team coaches Mike Phelan, Michael Carrick and Kieran McKenna.
Away from the competitive environment of matchdays, Ole has commended the work that his staff have done on the training ground to help not just unify the players but convey a playing style that has helped the Reds go on an unbeaten run of nine matches in all competitions.
“Of course, my job is to make them [the players] perform better and my management with them is to get the team playing better,” Solskjaer said.
“I've got Mike, Kieran, Michael, Demps [Mark Dempsey] and Emilio [Alvarez] with the keepers - fantastic staff. Of course, if we work together as a team and the players respond to that, the results are coming and the playing style is coming, that is a big plus for us as a club, but I don't think about it away. This has never been about me at all.”
“It's the staff, us together with the players and with the crowd,” Ole added.
“So, in the last 10 minutes against Burnley, that was the crowd lifting the players. That was the players then responding to that. It's not about me as a manager, if I put in this system or that system.
”It's how we work together and that for me is more of a testament to the club than it is to me and what we've done so far.
Highlights: United 2 Burnley 2Video
January has undoubtedly been a successful month for Solskjaer's Reds. United have considerably closed the gap to the top four and reached the Emirates FA Cup fifth round, with the Norwegian among five Reds who have been nominated for the Premier League and Professional Footballers' Association (PFA) monthly awards.
When asked about the Reds' chances of claiming a coveted Champions League spot this season, Ole was cautious but optimistic in equal measure.
“I had to come in and talk to the players,” he said.
“Talk about their performances, how we perform, what we expect from the playing style. If we can get the playing style right, I'm sure we'll get enough points to be in with a shout towards the end of the season.”
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