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Man Utd manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer signs new deal until 2024

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has signed a new deal with the club until 2024, with an option for a further year.

The Norwegian, 48, took over permanently in March 2019, having been put in interim charge when Jose Mourinho departed three months earlier.

He led United to second place in the Premier League last season and the Europa League final, which they lost.

Solskjaer said he was “delighted” at signing the new contract.

“We are more confident than ever that, under Ole’s leadership, we are heading in the right direction,” said United’s executive vice-chairman, Ed Woodward.

“Ole and his staff have worked tirelessly putting the foundations in place for long-term success on the pitch.

“The results of that have become increasingly visible over the past two seasons and we are all looking forward to seeing this exciting team develop further in the years ahead.

“What is especially pleasing is the way this progress has been achieved with a blend of young, homegrown talent and top-class recruits, playing attacking football in the best traditions of Manchester United.”

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Solskjaer spent 11 seasons as a United player, scoring the winning goal in the 1999 Champions League final.

He became United’s fourth permanent manager since Sir Alex Ferguson retired in 2013 when he signed a three-year contract in March 2019.

Solskjaer led the Old Trafford club to third in his first full season when they also got to the semi-finals of the Europa League before losing to Sevilla.

In the last campaign, United finished 12 points behind champions Manchester City in claiming the runners-up spot, while they were beaten by Villareal on penalties in the Europa League final.

The news of Solskjaer’s new deal follows the confirmation of the club signing England winger Jadon Sancho for £73m from Borussia Dortmund.

“Everyone knows the feeling I have for this club,” said Solskjaer.

“It is an exciting time for Manchester United. We have built a squad with a good balance of youth and experienced players that are hungry for success.

“I have a fantastic coaching team around me and we are all ready to take that next step on our journey.

“Manchester United wants to be winning the biggest and best trophies and that’s what we are all striving for. We have improved, both on and off the pitch, and that will continue over the coming seasons.”

Analysis

BBC Sport’s Simon Stone

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Should Ole Gunner Solskjaer get to the end of his new contract, since Ernest Mangnall between 1903 and 1912, only Sir Matt Busby and Sir Alex Ferguson will have been in charge for more games as Manchester United manager than the Norwegian.

That in itself underlines the faith the club have in Solskjaer.

The arrival of Jadon Sancho less than 24 hours earlier is a signing very much in the United traditions, which is what the manager was tasked with returning to Old Trafford when he answered the SOS call from Ed Woodward to replace Jose Mourinho in December 2018.

In truth, this news is not really a surprise. United could not have allowed Solskjaer’s contract to run into its final season because of the uncertainty it would bring.

And, in fairness to him, it has taken longer to put together a squad capable of challenging for the biggest prizes.

However, if, as appears likely, Raphael Varane arrives from Real Madrid and the Paul Pogba situation can be resolved satisfactorily – if he leaves a top-class midfield signing is essential – then, at the very least, United must compete. They looked like doing that in the Premier League in January, but eventually fell behind Manchester City.

Solskjaer also needs to deliver a trophy.

It is clear there is a bond between manager and club – and a shared desire for success. But, like every manager, Solskjaer will be judged on results. United have improved, but the safety net that existed during his first two-and-a-half years in charge will not stay in place forever.

www.bbc.co.uk

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