Man Utd legend Gary Neville’s preference to replace Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as manager
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer speaks ahead of Man Utd v Watford
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Manchester United hero Gary Neville has hinted Mauricio Pochettino would be a good replacement for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at Old Trafford. The Norwegian has overseen a turbulent campaign so far, with his side losing six of their last 12 matches across all competitions. And defeat to Watford on Saturday would be yet another hammer blow.
United expected big things from the current campaign, particularly after giving Solskjaer a new contract and backing him with the signings of Jadon Sancho, Raphael Varane and Cristiano Ronaldo.
However, the Red Devils’ season has gone from bad to worse under Solskjaer so far.
Chastening defeats to Leicester, Manchester City and Liverpool have left the 48-year-old clinging on, with plenty of names being linked with his job.
They range from Erik ten Hag to Brendan Rodgers, Ralf Rangnick to Zinedine Zidane.
But Neville, speaking to the Daily Mail, has hinted Pochettino would be his No 1 choice to replace Solskjaer at the club.
“He’s a coach, he has that feeling about him,” he said.
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Neville seemed reluctant to go into detail about Pochettino, who is currently in charge of Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain.
But he’s hinted his punditry days will soon be a thing of the past, insisting he won’t be doing the job forever.
“There will come a point when a new Neville, Carragher, Keane and Souness comes along,” he said.
“Suddenly you become yesterday’s voice don’t you?
“It will be like at Man United when you just stopped getting picked…
“Suddenly it will be: ‘Er Gary, Phil Foden and Harry Maguire are in the studio for us at the Manchester derby today. Can you go to Bury against Shrewsbury for us?’.”
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Neville also revealed he once ‘went too far’ by saying Loris Karius wasn’t good enough to play for Liverpool.
He added: “I think I have overstepped the mark once in punditry when I have attacked a player that was above and beyond what I should have done as an ex-pro.
“I went too far on Loris Karius.
“I said Liverpool would never win the league with him in goal. I look back now and think I criticised that lad too much for his age and his position.
“I actually think I was right but that doesn’t mean I should have done it. I went too far.”
And Neville has also doubled down on the need for footballers to have a voice in the game, with many instead relying on their social media accounts to be run by someone else.
“With broadcast media and on England duty then yes,” he said when told he’d sometimes be hit and miss in interviews.
“100 per cent. I was out there speaking. Especially after difficult results.
“Written media? Because Sir Alex treated you all with such disdain I never did it. I didn’t, no.
“But you know what? I think newspapers today are actually much better than 20 years ago.
“It was sensationalist with England back then. It was carnage.
“The national Press was full of massive personalities. They were powerful and they were intimidating to me, yes. I don’t think it’s like that now.
“When reporters sit down with players now I think they want a conversation whereas before it felt like you were about to be caught out.
“Players are certainly better at talking now and it’s fantastic. Declan Rice, Mason Mount, Phil Foden, Grealish. Raheem Sterling, Marcus Rashford. They are brilliant.
“The players of 20-21 are braver than my day, more outspoken. They have great personality and I trust and like them.
“They do things that in my day our managers or our own lack of confidence would have prevented us from doing.
“Dominic Calvert-Lewin came on our Monday Night Football show on Sky recently and was fantastic. It was a great idea.”
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