Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: reaction after Man United sack manager and appoint Michael Carrick as interim boss

Former team-mates have defended Solskjaer, while newspapers have criticised Manchester United’s hierarchy for the direction of the club

How have former players and pundits reacted to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s dismissal as Man Utd manager? (image: PA)

It might not have been the world’s biggest shock, but it has become major news nonetheless given the long-running saga of whether or not the Norwegian would be sacked, as well as United’s standing in world football.

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Michael Carrick has taken charge on an interim basis, and bookies have already been giving odds on who Solskjaer’s long-term successor will be.

But how have former players and the media reacted to Solskjaer’s sacking?

Former team-mates pay tribute

Former United team-mates lined up to wish Solskjaer their best following his sacking.

Gary Neville tweeted that the Norwegian had “restored some soul back to the club” during his tenure.

The pundit has also lambasted United’s current hierarchy.

Meanwhile, Patrice Evra also praised Solskjaer.

Fellow former Red Devils forward Michael Owen gave some analysis on what he thought had gone wrong for the manager.

He tweeted last night that he didn’t see how United could continue with Solskjaer.

In another tweet, Owen said he felt it was the “worst possible time” for United to be looking for a new boss given the paucity of options out there.

He said one early bookies’ favourite to replace Solskjaer - former Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane - might not be an option due to a “language barrier”, adding that he reckons United will stick with interim manager Michael Carrick until the end of the season.

Michael Owen was not the only player to be critical of Solskjaer’s reign.

Rio Ferdinand also said he felt it was the right time for the Norwegian to go.

What have the papers said?

News that Solskjaer could be in trouble was broken by The Sunday Times last night.

The paper revealed a board meeting was due to take place in the wake of the 4-1 loss to Watford at Vicarage Road.

The Mail on Sunday has reported that United’s key frontman Cristiano Ronaldo would like to see Spain’s national manager and former Barcelona boss Luis Enrique appointed as Man Utd boss.

But Ronaldo himself could be the club’s biggest problem according to Guardian writer Jonathan Wilson, who also described the club as “institutionally dysfunctional”.

Wilson’s views were echoed by fellow Guardian columnist Jonathan Liew, who argues that Man Utd have not learnt from their previous mistakes in the post-Ferguson era.

The Sun on Sunday described Solskjaer’s sacking as “brutal” and reported that United will pay £7.5m to Solskjaer as part of his severance package.

Chief football correspondent at The Daily Telegraph Jason Burt criticised United’s caretaker manager strategy and said interim boss Michael Carrick should not be afraid to step out from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s shadow.

Meanwhile, the Mirror’s chief football writer John Cross wrote that the club should no longer accept its drift towards mediocrity, and ought to make a “big, bold and ambitious” appointment to replace the Norwegian manager.