Common contradictions and double standards with fans regarding Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

By Manveer Singh Gill

Just to clarify, I still back the manager and I just want a fair, and justified perspective to be projected to the Manchester United fanbase, as so many divisions only increases the persistent toxicity that is essentially rotting the core of the Football Club.

The most recent occurrence is the Cristiano Ronaldo situation, in which a large majority of the media and fanbase heavily criticised Ole for not starting him in what was deemed a must-win game against Everton.

Many, and perhaps rightly so, believed Ronaldo should have started this game. Despite recent subpar performances, his goal record (5 goals in 5 games) was unquestionably vital to United’s results. So why wasn’t he started?

One reason could stem from the fact CR7 is now 36 yrs old. Some claim he could play week in week out, but to be introduced to so many games in such a short time (with an increased intensity) meant strain on the No.7’s body was inevitable (irrespective of his unique physicality).

It was undoubtable he would also be used in 1, maybe 2 World Cup qualifiers, and so this may present one explanation to Ronaldo’s omission. Let us not forget how his replacement was also.

An experienced veteran, who provided relentless pressing (differing to Ronaldo) and is a credible aerial threat (similar to Ronaldo). Edinson Cavani was also fresh from a brilliantly impressive cameo against Villarreal, and that momentum was expected to be continued.

What adds to Edinson Cavani’s appeal is the chance to provide a platform for the front 3 to be balanced in attacking. Jadon Sancho’s creativity and Mason Greenwood’s ruthless finishing complimented Cavani’s playing style more so than Ronaldo’s.

Solsjkær knew we had to start the game well, and hit them with a rapid start. What better way to achieve this than setting the team to press right from the front? What is also forgotten is the depletion of this Everton team, and how this presented an opportunity to rest Ronaldo.

And so, OGS’s decision to start Cavani seems completely acceptable, especially if we had won the game. Only such issues arise if the result reaches a negative conclusion. To add, Ronaldo was still brought on at an earlier, and completely understandable time to make a difference.

Therefore, it seems ridiculous how those same fans who attacked Ole thought it was fair to claim Ronaldo should now be dropped (after the Leicester City game), as he doesn’t fit the balance of the team. How they can do this, I can’t comprehend – this just shows another agenda against OGS.

Another inconsistency against Ole concerns the individual brilliance matter. This is a more simple, and explicitly obvious occurrence compared to its previous.

The term “individual brilliance” is used extensively when attempting to explain why we have achieved positive results in games under OGS. Whether it is a 5-0 thrashing, or a hard fought 1-0 win, somewhere and somehow we have only won the game due to individual brilliance.

And in some cases, this is not incorrect – in fact, it would be a bit concerning if this didn’t happen, considering it aids all top teams around the world (regardless of who the manager is).

I find it amusing to see how fans can confidently comment on Ole’s need for individual brilliance, but also defend the likes of Tuchel and Klopp when the same situations unfold. Two recent examples easily show this.

You can go into the stats of Edouard Mendy’s performances and they will certainly support this idea, but Tuchel has been saved countlessly because of excellent displays of individual brilliance. Take their most recent game against Brentford.

Brentford absolutely dominated and were extremely unlucky to lose. And why was that? Not because of Tuchel, I can tell you, but individual brilliance. Without Mendy, it is plain and simple Chelsea would have lost. And again, this is completely acceptable. It’s part of football.

So why is it not allowed when it happens to Solsjkær? Some say he rides his luck more – but he picks those players at the end of the day, and if they produce such goods then this should be rewarded. Tuchel is also awarded, but some think one manager is more entitled than another.

And we look to Klopp. Mohamed Salah has produced goals out of nothing, time and time again this season. Even Sadio Mané, who, especially in their title winning season, dragged Liverpool to wins as a result of his individual brilliance.

This 3rd, shorter point ties in with the former, however it looks at the opposite end of the spectrum, of individual mistakes. These play significant roles in football, and affect any team. They can turn games on their heads, and can present an unfair reflection to any match.

It has occurred frequently this year for Manchester United, with AWB’s red card, Lingard’s back pass and Maguire’s many mistakes against Leicester. But in each of those games, OGS has received the brunt of criticism – now how is this fair?

Fine, if you want to make points on tactics, that is a different matter – you can possess the tactics of SAF, Pep and José combined and you still cannot prevent such individual mistakes. But Ole continues to receive abuse over this; how, why?

Yes, he picked the players, but those players are professional footballers who aren’t expected to make schoolboy mistakes. Maguire, despite being perceived unfit, is capable of being able to move 5 yards to the left or back to prevent the final goals, or step up 1 yard to pass a ball?

And those are my thoughts. If you don’t agree, there’s no need to be toxic, but instead have a normal conversation on your opinions.

What I hope is that this article may have convinced you to see the Solsjkaer I see, and to hopefully add your support for our current manager.

Written by Manveer Singh Gill

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