When the 2018-19 season was approaching its midway point, Manchester United sacked their then manager Jose Mourinho after just 17 games. In those 17 games, United broke a lot of records, but for all the wrong reasons. They had just 26 points, which was their worst return in 29 seasons, they conceded more goals at that point of the season than any other season and had the worst goal difference in 29 years at that point.
But with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s (OGS) appointment as caretaker manager, things started to look up instantly. United transformed overnight. High energy, intricate passing, hunger for goals and much improved performances saw United go 12 league games unbeaten at the time, dropping just 4 points. That saw United gain 32 points, and with the a renewed belief instilled and fans in love with the style of play reminiscent of the United of old. Ole was given the job permanently in the final week of March after winning 14 in 19 games at the helm.
But ever since then, United haven’t been the same. Their run of form has been shocking to say the least, losing 4-0 on aggregate to Barcelona in the CL quarter-finals, getting demolished 4-0 at Everton after a dismal performance and most recently, a 2-0 home defeat to their noisy neighbors, City.
This poor run of form has seen them win just two games, against Watford and West Ham. The game against Watford was the last time United scored from open play, and the stats surrounding this are disappointing from a United perspective.
MUFC haven't scored a goal for 4 hours 40 mins and counting. MUFC haven't scored from open play for 8 hours 47 minutes.
— Andy Mitten (@AndyMitten) April 24, 2019
Drawing blanks against Barcelona, Everton and City and scoring twice from the spot against West Ham, United’s attacking resurgence when Ole took over appears to have diminished.
The excellence and swagger that they portrayed during the “honeymoon ” period under Ole has been missing over the past month. And with every game from here on crucial for securing top 4, United fans will be hoping that the team dusts itself and provide fans solace in a season of highs and lows.
Fans are singing ‘Ole’s at the wheel…’ on every match-day regardless of the result, but have the wheels fallen off for Manchester United after a rapturous start under Ole, or is this just a blip that will be laughed at come the end of the season? Should Manchester United have waited till the end of the season to announce OGS?