Schmeichel calls for Solskjaer stay at Man Utd while hinting at Old Trafford return of his own

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer 2018-19
Getty Images
The legendary former Red Devils goalkeeper believes the club have found the best manager for the job and admits a directorial role would interest him

Peter Schmeichel considers Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to be the “top candidate” to become Manchester United’s permanent manager and admits he would be interested in making his own return to the club in a director of football post.

The Red Devils turned to one familiar face for inspiration back in December after taking the decision to part with Jose Mourinho.

Solskjaer, as a Treble winner from his playing days, was welcomed back to Old Trafford with open arms and has made a stunning impact since taking the reins – collecting 12 wins from 15 games.

He has lifted United back into top-four contention and through to the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, with many now considering it to be merely a matter of time before an interim agreement is turned into a full-time contract.

Goal 50 Revealed: The best 50 players in the world

Former team-mate Schmeichel expects that decision to be made, telling PA Sport: "He must be top candidate now.

"I think with Ole it is kind of a free ride because he's only there on a temporary basis, but he's proven - and the Liverpool game was key for me - that his way of thinking, he's a top, top, top manager.

"I mean, we were trying to think about a game where three, actually four, players get injured in the first 25 minutes and you have to regroup.

"I can't remember anyone ever being faced with that challenge and I thought he came out of that smelling of roses."

Schmeichel added on Solskjaer’s return to United: "I didn't even see the announcement of Ole coming - it was a really big surprise that they picked him.

"I thought they'd go somewhere else. You know, some of the former players who have had bigger clubs - who have been at the club but are from different, other parts of Europe.

"It was kind of a clever move because Ole's worked with [Paul] Pogba, he's worked with [Jesse] Lingard when they were in the reserves and they have huge respect for Ole. Everyone has huge respect for Ole.

"His potential as a coach was very, very [clear] early on. It was very clear he would be a very good coach."


While Solskjaer is thriving in the managerial hot seat at Old Trafford, United remain in the market for a director of football to work alongside the man at the helm.

Schmeichel has no past experience in such a position, but the legendary former Red Devils goalkeeper concedes that he would welcome the opportunity to fill that post.

He added: "I mean, I'd do anything for this club, of course I'd be silly not to do that, you know? I'd be silly not to say, 'of course I want to do it'.

Article continues below

"Chasing the job, I think it's different. I think I wouldn't do that.

"My life and the work I do has great variety and it's a difficult one to let go, if you know what I'm saying?

"But of course if I was asked to do a job for the club, I would. I think we all would."