Pundit claims Ole lacks one ‘innate ability’; aims dig at Woodward

Joe Williams
Ed Woodward Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Man Utd

Former Crystal Palace chairman Simon Jordan claims that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer lacks the “innate ability to concentrate the minds” of his Manchester United squad, while he has also questioned the ability of executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward.

Things had gone awry after a stunning start to Champions League Group H but the Red Devils only needed a point on Tuesday against RB Leipzig – a side they beat 5-0 just six weeks ago – to secure progress to the knockout phase.

But Europa League football now awaits United having fallen just short of a remarkable European comeback at Leipzig, where Angelino, on loan from Manchester City, and Amadou Haidara scored within the opening 13 minutes.

MAILBOX: Solskjaer is a ‘coward’ that ‘can’t control’ his Man Utd team…

Substitute Justin Kluivert added a third in the second half and it proved too big of a hole for Solskjaer’s comeback kings to climb out of, with Bruno Fernandes and Paul Pogba scoring late goals in a galling 3-2 defeat.

And Jordan thinks Woodward, the man who hired Solskjaer, needs to shoulder some of the blame for their Champions League exit.

“I think Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is doing the job to the level of his abilities,” Jordan said on talkSPORT.

“I think he has got players who are really letting him down.

“I think the reason they are letting him down is because he doesn’t have innate ability – that X-factor – to concentrate the minds of those players to understand the responsibility of what they have to do from the very first whistle – irrespective of formations.


“People talked about the tactical naivety of Solskjaer – this wasn’t about tactical naivety.

“This was about players not doing their jobs and not being responsible for coming out of the blocks on the front foot in most of the games they come out in, and that is in part the leadership and gravitas the manager implores in players.

“Man United fans get very fed up of us talking about Solskjaer and me piling in every time they get a bad result.

“But I think if you look at Man United fans and asked, ‘what do you think of Ed Woodward?’, 80 per cent of them would say he’s not fit for purpose.

“So if he’s not fit for purpose in that job, why is he fit for purpose to employ someone to do the most critical job? Which is to manage the team.

“That is the biggest question that has yet to be answered.”