Ferdinand underlines stance on Solskjaer's United future

Rio Ferdinand said earlier this month that it might be time for Manchester United to move on from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Ferdinand underlined that stance once again on BT Sport’s pre-match coverage of Leicester v Chelsea.

While other pundits, including Gary Neville, have stopped short of calling for Solskjaer to be sacked, Ferdinand has said it.

He was also asked who the new manager should be if United do remove Solskjaer, but he could not come up with a name.

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“It wasn’t,” replied Ferdinand when asked how hard it was to come out and call for Solskjaer to be sacked.

“We’re all quick to talk about players – he should be out the window or he should never wear the shirt again – so it’s got to be the same with the managers.

“I’m not saying I’m enjoying saying a manager needs to be sacked. I am saying things are not going well, so maybe there needs to be a change if you want to improve things.

“That’s what I’m paid to do, give an honest assessment. Friends, former teammates, people I don’t know – treat them all the same.”

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When asked who Solskjaer’s successor should be, Ferdinand said: “I don’t know. Wait and see. If I knew the answer to that, who would be successful, I should be in there doing the job.”

Ferdinand’s comments sum up the dilemma facing United at the moment.

The need for change is obvious but there is no outstanding candidate to come in and take over now.

Antonio Conte has now gone to Tottenham and the likes of Mauricio Pochettino and Erik ten Hag will not be available until the summer.

Perhaps an interim boss like Ralf Rangnick could be the solution, but there is no easy way out of this.

That said, Ferdinand will get a lot of respect from a lot of United fans by saying what Neville and other pundits have refused to say.

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Sam Preston is an NCTJ gold standard news and sports journalist who studied with the Press Association. He also has a 2:1 law with French law degree from the University of Birmingham, which included a year studying at Bordeaux Montaigne University. He is an FA Level 1 football coach who appeared on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show in 2018 and has also written digital football content and match-day programme pieces for Colchester United, Mansfield Town and Stockport County.