Ed Woodward’s logic as Man Utd keep Michael Carrick, Mike Phelan and Kieran McKenna

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Manchester United decided to keep Michael Carrick, Mike Phelan and Kieran McKenna because Ed Woodward saw ‘no point in dismissing them’, according to reports. The Red Devils gave Ole Gunnar Solskjaer the boot on Sunday. But his coaching staff will remain at Old Trafford.

Manchester United confirmed the sacking of Solskjaer on Sunday, less than 24 hours after they’d been battered by Watford.

And the Red Devils are now on the lookout for an interim replacement, with Carrick set to take charge in the meantime.

The former midfielder will oversee Tuesday night’s Champions League clash with Villarreal, as well as Sunday’s showdown with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

And The Athletic have now revealed why Woodward didn’t chop the members of the 48-year-old’s coaching staff.

It’s claimed that Woodward approached Carrick about taking the reins and the club legend was happy to accept.

McKenna and Phelan, meanwhile, were kept on because the United chief thought they may be useful to any potential Solskjaer successor.

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And, in the end, Woodward saw ‘no point’ in chopping the pair.

That’s a controversial decision, especially as Carrick and McKenna were, in particular, involved in pre-match planning under Solskjaer.

Yet how they fare is something only time will ultimately tell.

United are now poised to hunt an interim boss, with several names in the frame to take charge.

Ralf Rangnick is one, with John Murtough supposedly having ‘huge admiration’ for the 63-year-old.

Laurent Blanc’s name has been mooted, too, with the Frenchman previously spending two years as a player at Old Trafford.


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But when it comes to permanent successors, there are various names in the frame.

Mauricio Pochettino seems to be United’s No 1 choice, despite currently working with Paris Saint-Germain in France.

Pochettino’s track record of improving young players appeals, while United have previously targeted him in the past.

And with the Argentine not entirely happy in Paris, a return to the Premier League could be on the cards.

Brendan Rodgers and Erik ten Hag are also candidates, regardless of their commitments to Leicester and Ajax.

But while Zinedine Zidane is admired by the United hierarchy, the Real Madrid icon has reportedly ruled out the job.

Solskjaer, meanwhile, has admitted he’d dreamed of winning the Premier League title prior to his departure.

“You know what this club means to me and what I wanted to achieve here,” he said.  

“For the club, for the fans, for the players, for the staff. I wanted us to take the next step to challenge for the league, to win trophies and I only think it’s right that it comes from the horse’s mouth.

“I don’t want to answer all… there’s going to be journalists asking me about interviews but no, I’m not going to do any interviews.

“I want to get it out there, I’m going to leave by the front door, because I think everyone knows I’ve given everything for this club.

“This club means everything to me and together we’re a good match, but unfortunately I couldn’t get the results we needed and it’s time for me to step aside.”

He added: “Well, as I’ve said many times in interviews, I’ve been backed.

“The board and the owners have backed me in [terms of] bringing good people in, good players in and I think, or I know, I leave this club with a better squad.

“The environment is fantastic, it’s an environment I’m proud of leaving because you have to enjoy coming in here working.

“I don’t want to pre-empt anything but the two times I’ve left Molde, they’ve won the league the year after, so all the best to whoever takes over – that’s the expectation!”

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