Van Persie urges Man United to give fair chance to Solskjaer

- AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, LONDON

May 23, 2019-

Robin van Persie has urged Manchester United to keep faith with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer after the under-fire manager’s turbulent end to his first season in charge.

Solskjaer presided over a miserable conclusion to a campaign that saw United fail to qualify for the Champions League after finishing sixth in the league. However, Van Persie, whose goals helped United win their last league title in 2013, is adamant Solskjaer deserves more time to get the club back on track.

“I think it’s the perfect match, it’s just they’re having a bad spell,” Van Persie told BBC Sport on Wednesday. “Back in the day it was normal for a manager to get time. Nowadays if you lose six games, you’re out. Is that the solution? Give someone time, especially if it’s a kid from

the club.”

Former United striker Solskjaer had made a positive impact after replacing the sacked Jose Mourinho as interim boss in December. Solskjaer oversaw a 15-match unbeaten domestic run and led United to a stunning Champions League last 16, second leg win over Paris Saint-Germain. But United’s form dipped dramatically once Solskjaer was hired on a permanent basis in March and a run of six defeats from their last 10 games shattered their top four hopes.

Solskjaer’s problems have mounted amid claims that United midfielder Paul Pogba wants to join Real Madrid, while the boss is reportedly unhappy with the fitness levels and commitment of some of his squad. The 46-year-old, whose only other managerial spells came at Cardiff and Molde, needs to make a flying start to next season if he is to avoid calls for his dismissal.

But Dutch forward Van Persie, who scored 58 goals in 105 games for United, says his old team need to let the Norwegian grow into the role rather than panicking at the first sign of bad results. Van Persie, who retired at the end of this season after a spell with Feyenoord, doesn’t think United’s problems will be solved only by splashing out on new signings. “Back in the day you used to get time, you can make mistakes, you can learn. Now I get the feeling that time is less. Ideally, you would get time--as a player, as a coach.”

Published: 23-05-2019 10:08

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