Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been sacked as Manchester United manager following their 4-1 defeat at Watford on Saturday, the Premier League club have announced.
United added that former midfielder and current first-team coach Michael Carrick will take charge of the forthcoming games, while the club looks to appoint an “interim manager” for the rest of the season.
A club statement read: “Ole will always be a legend at Manchester United. It is with regret that we have reached this difficult decision.
“While the past few weeks have been disappointing, they should not obscure all the work he has done over the past three years to rebuild the foundations for long-term success.
“Ole leaves with our sincerest thanks for his tireless efforts as Manager and our very best wishes for the future.
“His place in the club’s history will always be secure, not just for his story as a player, but as a great man and a Manager who gave us many great moments.
“He will forever be welcome back at Old Trafford as part of the Manchester United family.”
Carrick’s first assignment after stepping up from his role as assistant manager is a vital Champions League clash away to Villarreal coming up on Tuesday.
The decision comes at the end of a torrid run of results for United under Solskjaer. The club great who himself took over on an interim basis back in December 2018 after the sacking of Jose Mourinho.
He rode out a chastening 5-0 home loss to Liverpool and appeared to be back in calmer waters after a 3-0 win at Tottenham, However, a comprehensive derby loss to Manchester City meant that the Watford game was essentially a must-win.
Inevitable happens after Watford horror show
The writing was on the wall for Solskjaer when Watford flew into a 2-0 lead through Josh King and Ismaila Sarr.
Substitute Donny van de Beek pulled one back but United’s under-fire captain Harry Maguire was sent off after 69 minutes and late goals from Joao Pedro and Emmanuel Dennis piled on the misery.
The struggles were not widely expected back when Solskjaer became the first United manager to win his first six league games, beating a record held by Sir Matt Busby, and was handed the permanent role in March 2019.
United finished second behind Manchester City last season but currently lie seventh, six points off West Ham in fourth and 12 behind leaders Chelsea.
Meanwhile, Solskjaer’s former team-mate Gary Neville thanked the Norwegian for the job he has done.
Neville tweeted: “Thank you Ole. You did us proud. The last two months were tough but before that you restored some soul into the club.”