Ole Gunnar Solskjaer names £446m quintet Man Utd ‘could not sign’ including Man City and England stars
The former Manchester United manager has given a hint of what could have been during his time at Old Trafford.
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Former Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has revealed his missed out on signing some of world football’s biggest names during his time in charge at Old Trafford.
The Red Devils legend initially took charge on a caretaker basis following Jose Mourinho’s exit in December 2018 before he was named as permanent successor to the Portuguese boss just four months later after overseeing a significant improvement in on-pitch displays.
After ending the season in sixth place in the Premier League table, Solskjaer looked to put his own print on the United squad over the following years as the likes of Harry Maguire, Bruno Fernandes, Jadon Sancho and Aaron Wan-Bissaka all moved to Old Trafford before Cristiano Ronaldo’s much heralded return to the club was secured.
Solskjaer departed in November 2021 following a 4-1 defeat at Watford that left the Red Devils sat outside of the top six and 12 points behind then-leaders Chelsea after spending around £440m during his three years in charge of the club where he became a history-maker as part of Sir Alex Ferguson’s treble-winning side in 1999.
However, the Norwegian revealed he indenfied five possible new signings that have gone on to make big money moves over the last 12 months but was told they were unattainable by the Old Trafford hierarcy - including a striker that has made a major impact on the other half of Manchester and three England stars that made high-profile moves in recent months.
When asked which players he wanted to take to Old Trafford, he told The Athletic: “Erling Haaland, before he made his Salzburg debut. Declan Rice, who wouldn’t have cost what he did in the summer. We discussed Moises Caicedo, but we felt we needed players ready for there and then.
“We wanted Jude Bellingham badly — he’s a Man United player, but I respect he chose Dortmund. That was probably sensible. I would have signed (Harry) Kane every day of the week and my understanding was that he wanted to come. But the club didn’t have the budget with the financial constraints from Covid-19, there was no bottomless pit.”