Publication date: Wednesday, January 30, 2019, 9:34.
“Andreas will be better off if he has this experience, so there’s no problem with that,” said Ole Gunnar Solskyer, continuing his laudable mission to be the opposite of Jose Mourinho: a) incredibly positive attitude to everything and b) never, never throwing his players under the bus.
We suspect that Pereira will not be “better” for a 63-minute turn at his first start in five months, but Solskjaer could. Perhaps the Norwegian needed to be reminded that not everything he touches turns into gold; he is not infallible. This shit is not as easy as it made it look.
It was the starting lineup that could earn Mourinho a well-deserved condemnation – fiery Marcus Rushford pushed left, perpetual motion Ander Herrera sent to the bench to be replaced by the nervous Pereira, the defense-deadening movement of Jesse Lingard and Alexis Sanchez is inadequately supplanted by the predictability of Juan Mata and Romelu Lukaku. Solskieru was unlucky to lose Anthony Martial from his preferred starting lineup, but he brought the rest to himself.
As if the last six weeks had not happened, because United was again slow, heavy and lacked some real inspiration. No wonder; Solskyer decided to simultaneously remove three of the first five exhausted arsenal on friday nightWhen you saw the team list, you felt that it was too much, and when you saw it on the field, it was too much.
“The pace of the ball was not good enough,” said Solskyer to the voice of a million football fans saying, “What did you expect?” The manner of returning “United” is something that many people remember from Tuesday evening – Solskyer corrects his own mistakes in order to bring Sanchez and Lingard on himself – and this will certainly add a cult to the Norwegian, who spoke about the “DNA” of the late attack of Manchester United, but this is just smoke and a mirror if it does not learn from this error. He should feel a little humble, a little silly, a bit more mundane.
You can hardly blame Solskyer for feeling safe from nonsense; for six weeks, he is praised as a smiling savior, and the media and fans are willing to push him ahead of all other applicants for a permanent position. It turns out, following Mourinho really was a precious free hit – "Like following the worst of the former or most mediocre karaoke singers." He chose the favorites of the fans, isolated the villains of the pantomime, constantly spoke about him and the history of the club, checked the name of Sir Alex and spoke eloquently, positively and ambitiously. That he was then declined before open target freed by Mauricio Pochettino was a wonderful bonus.
It is therefore not surprising that he approached the home game with Burnley with arrogance in order to make massive changes. If United wins – and, undoubtedly, they win – they will again be praised as a genius who is able to remove players from the game, which many fans will happily give up. One draw and one later return later, we hope that Solskyär should have this experience and remember the mistakes as well as the ransom.