Manchester United’s faith in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer remains unwavered and the club will reportedly back the Norwegian with the cash needed to sign a pair of his ‘dream’ players.
This time last week, Solskjaer’s position appeared to be under the spotlight once again following their worst start to a season in 31 years, but successive Premier League wins over Tottenham and at champions Manchester City has not only changed the mood but got the likes of Harry Maguire to start dreaming of the top four once again.
And with Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher explaining his bewilderment at the quality of their performance at the Etihad, the Daily Mail now reports that United’s owners, the Glazer family, will now back the Norwegian with serious transfer funds to turn the club back into a true force.
The newspaper states that Solskjaer’s position as manager is not under any threat and, furthermore, funds will be provided for the manager to try and prise two of his top targets in striker Erling Braut Haaland and midfielder Saul Niguez.
The interest in Haaland is nothing new, with the RB Salzburg striker expected to cost in the region of £45m after a string of impressive performances for the Austrian side this season.
The 19-year-old has taken the Champions League by storm on his debut in the competition and his eight goals so far is bettered only by Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski.
Haaland, son of former Leeds and Manchester City midfielder Alf-Inge, has scored 28 goals in 21 appearances in all competitions this term and has five hat-tricks to his name, including one on his Champions League debut.
That has understandably led to him being linked with a variety of top clubs, and the striker had a few words to say on his future on Monday ahead of Tuesday evening’s Champions League battle with Liverpool.
“I’m just focused on my job: playing football. I try to enjoy what I do every day, and go in with a clear mindset and enjoy the moment right now,” he told a press conference.
“My focus now is on Salzburg and me as a player. It is not hard at all. I am enjoying every day playing football.
“My father was a former player so he has been helping me but I also have a lot of friends who also help me in these situations.
“Doing what I am doing every week it is not easy but that’s what I try to do. My father has been helping a lot.
“This is the biggest game of my career so far. Matches like this are what you dream of so I am enjoying it. I’m living the dream.”
Saul, meanwhile, is contracted to Atletico Madrid until 2026, but the midfielder is reported to have a release clause of £135m.
The Spain star has long been of interest to the club, with former managers Louis van Gaal and Jose Mourinho both targeting the classy performer as a would-be target for the future.
Speculation linking the Atletico star with United would likely mean the end of Paul Pogba at United, with one pundit urging the club to “bin” the France star at the first available opportunity as a result of him not being missed during the past two games.
Solskjaer, meanwhile, has said he is confident of landing his targets as he looks to strengthen the United squad for a surge up the table in the second half of the season.
Talking to Norwegian channel TV2, Solskjaer said: “This week might cause people to talk a bit less, and for me it’s always more fun to talk about things other than critique or speculations.
“I find it unnecessary when I know what we are doing and trying to do, and what we have planned going forward.
“If we can keep these boys injury-free, we will take lots of points — and we are going to reinforce the squad.
“It is physically tough to play football the way I want to play football. But we are on our way to become as robust as I want and need.
“These boys have the right attitude, they have the belief, they are boys that I want to keep going forward, that’s why they are here right now.”
The report in the Mail, meanwhile, suggests both these signings are more likely to happen in the summer rather than now, though Monday’s European papers suggested a swap deal was on the cards between United and a European giant next month.