Ole Gunnar Solskjaer speaks out for first time since Man Utd dismissal
"It’s one of those things you dream of in your life."
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has spoken out for the first time since he was dismissed as Manchester United manager on Sunday.
The Norwegian's time in charge came to and end after United's 4-1 loss against Watford on Saturday, with the Red Devils securing just one win in their last seven Premier League games.
Solskjaer - who was appointed United manager on an interim basis in December 2018 after the dismissal of Jose Mourinho - helped to improve United's form, but despite a raft of new signings, he failed to oversee a genuine title challenge, and missed out on silverware when United lost the final of the Europa League to Villarreal on penalties last season.
After his dismissal from the club was confirmed, the 48-year-old revealed how proud he is to have managed the Red Devils, insisting it was a 'dream' come true.
“Very, very proud. Of course, it’s one of those things you dream of in your life," Solskjaer told Man Utd.
"When you’ve been a player, when you’ve been a reserve team coach, the next job then, the only dream and the only thing you haven’t done is to manage the club, and I have now.
"It’s been a ball, it’s been absolutely enjoyable from the first to the last minute, so I have to thank all the players because since I came in, they’re top lads, top people.
"Some have come, some have gone, but all of them, they’ve been such an enjoyable bunch to work with.
"First of all, I want to thank the board and the owners for giving me the opportunity because it’s not for everyone and I’ve had the opportunity.
"I’m so honoured and privileged to have been trusted to take the club forward, and I really hope that I leave it in a better state than when I came.
"With the fans, the fans have been amazing. From day one at Cardiff until the last one now. [They’ve been] top, and we’ll see each other again."
Our farewell interview with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer ❤#MUFC
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) November 21, 2021
During his time in the hot-seat, the Red Devils secured a memorable win over Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League in 2019.
After losing the first leg of their Round of 16 tie 2-0, United won 3-1 away in the reverse fixture and progressed into the next round - courtesy of an injury-time Marcus Rashford penalty.
The Norwegian spoke passionately about that night, admitting that it was a game where 'some boys experienced what Man United is really about'.
He said: "Yeah, what a night. That’s probably the first night that these boys experienced what Man United is really about, some of these boys.
"Because we were down and out, everyone thought we had no chance against a very good team with good players.
"But they showed the Man United character and pride.
"That performance, I’ll remember that of course and I’ve not a very nice picture of me, Sir Alex [Ferguson] and Eric [Cantona] celebrating, and some videos from the dressing room. So, good memories."
The high profile signings of Raphael Varane, Jadon Sancho and Cristiano Ronaldo were expected to help United close the ground on Premier League champions City, but their dismal start to the season already looks to have extinguished hopes of them ending their wait for league glory.
The former United striker admitted that he had been backed in the summer and that he hopes he leaves the squad in a better position than before.
"Well, as I’ve said many times in interviews, I’ve been backed. The board and the owners have backed me in [terms of] bringing good people in, good players in and I think, or I know I leave this club with a better squad," said Solskjaer.
"The environment is fantastic, it’s an environment I’m proud of leaving because you have to enjoy coming in here working.
"I don’t want to pre-empt anything but the two times I’ve left Molde, they’ve won the league the year after, so all the best to whoever takes over – that’s the expectations!"
Solskjaer stated that, following his dismissal, he now plans to spend time with his family in Norway, but was adamant that wherever he was, he will always watch and love United.
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