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Solksjaer aims to tie Martial & De Gea down to new Man Utd deals

7:55 AM SGT 30/12/18
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Manchester United 2018-19
The Norwegian is eager to leave the club in a stronger state than he found it after succeeding Jose Mourinho

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer believes there is “no greener grass” than at Manchester United as he attempts to persuade Anthony Martial and David De Gea to renew their Old Trafford deals.

The pair are far from agreeing extensions to their current contracts despite United's best efforts, and the Norwegian is eager to leave the club in a stronger position than he found it following the sacking of Jose Mourinho.

Solskjaer was himself the subject of interest from other clubs when he was a player at United, but chose to remain a part of Sir Alex Ferguson’s squad after the manager convinced him he was a part of his plans.

Now the caretaker manager, installed until the end of the current season, is taking inspiration from his old boss by trying to tie down the pair. 

“I know the club want them [Martial and De Gea] to sign, of course, because they are top quality players,” said Solskjaer. “It’s down to the players, but when you’re at Man United there isn’t a lot of greener grass on the other side.

“You are at the best place. It’s the biggest club in the world. For me, I would hope I can help or guide these players to maybe tip them over to thinking they want to stay at this club.”

Solskjaer was often brought off the bench during his playing days at Old Trafford, playing backup to the club’s supposedly bigger names, particularly Andy Cole and Dwight Yorke.

And it was from the bench that he scored perhaps the club’s most famous goal, flicking out a boot to turn home a David Beckham corner in the final minute of the 1999 Champions League final against Bayern Munich.

“I had loads of offers and possibilities to move but the manager sat me down and told me I was going to be an important part of his team, his squad and I was going to play enough games,” said Solskjaer.

“I felt privileged to play here. I am also stubborn. The club agreed to sell me to Spurs one time and I said ‘no, thank you.’ My agent wanted me to go, but I knew I was at the best place.”