Journalist Duncan Castles has warned Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer about what he claims to be the true nature of Ed Woodward’s latest statement.
United’s executive vice-chairman Woodward said that he felt “absolutely committed” to Solskajer’s progress on Thursday.
Woodward was speaking amid the release of the club’s latest accounts. But the comments came after recent pressure on Solskjaer’s future and links to Mauricio Pochettino.
United had reportedly sounded out Pochettino after two defeats in a row, including the 2-1 loss to Istanbul Basaksehir. However, Solskjaer eased the speculation with a 3-1 win at Everton before the international break.
Nevertheless, Castles has warned that Woodward could still hang Solskjaer out to dry if results turn sour.
Castles asked on the Transfer Window Podcast: “What did Woodward actually say?
“He said ‘on the pitch, while there is still great work ahead to achieve absolute consistency, we remain absolutely committed to the positive path we are on under Ole as the team continues to develop’.
“Yeah, you can read that as him being absolutely committed to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
“But you can also read it as they’re absolutely committed to the positive path they’re on, and you can almost put ‘under Ole’ in brackets.
“It’s not ‘we are absolutely committed to Solskjaer as manager’, it’s being absolutely committed to what they describe as a positive path.”
Solskjaer could still face sack
Castles went on to warn that, despite Woodward’s assurances, the boardroom chief will have no qualms about sacking the Norwegian.
“My assumption is that what [Woodward] wanted the message to be perceived as a message of support for Solskjaer,” Castles said.
“Whereas should Solskjaer be removed and results get to a stage where they decide they need a change, and they act on the communications they’ve had with Mauricio Pochettino’s people, they’d be able to go back and say ‘well, we didn’t actually say that, that commitment was to the positive path.
“‘We decided the positive path had been strayed from, therefore we had to divert ourselves from Solskjaer.'”
United‘s win over Everton lifted the Red Devils to 14th in the Premier League heading into the international break.