Belfast Telegraph

Every day’s an old school day under Solskjaer, says Lingard

England international praises Norwegian – and Phelan – for Manchester United’s “perfect” play.

Jesse Lingard is enjoying life under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (Nick Potts/PA)
Jesse Lingard is enjoying life under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (Nick Potts/PA)

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has helped bring back “the old school Manchester United” and made Jesse Lingard confident of a title challenge next season.

Jose Mourinho’s December sacking was followed by the surprise appointment of the 1999 treble hero until the end of the campaign – a role the Norwegian is flourishing in.

Solskjaer has won nine of his 10 matches in charge in all competitions, with that unbeaten start to life in the dugout seeing United close the gap on the top four and excite the fans.

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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer congratulates Jesse Lingard after starting his reign with victory at Cardiff (Nick Potts/PA)

Such improvements are increasing his chances of getting the job permanently and Lingard believes United are on the up under the caretaker boss.

“Solskjaer and Mike Phelan have brought back the old school Manchester United,” the England international told the Daily Mail.

“They know the league and the club inside out, so to pass that on and get us playing how we are has been perfect. Solskjaer is doing very well, nobody can fault him.

“He got the players backing him straight away. He told us there are big expectations and pressure at this club but we have to deal with it and play like a real United team.

“We will challenge for the title next season if we carry on how we are now.

“We’re back to basics and winning games by grinding out results or scoring a lot of goals.

“As long as we’re winning games, that’s all that matters.”

The on-field improvement under Solskjaer has led to increased interest from afar.

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Manchester United fans hold up a Norwegian flag (Nick Potts/PA)

United’s official travel partner Thomas Cook Sport are reporting an 89 per cent increase in bookings compared to the same period last year.

Norway represents 20 per cent of those sales, with Solskjaer having a similar impact to Zlatan Ibrahimovic when he arrived at the club.

Rob Slawson, head of Thomas Cook Sport, said: “We’ve seen a huge spike in sales from our Scandinavia business as well as massive interest from other sports travel agents in Norway – it seems the Ole factor is back at Old Trafford.

“We saw this a couple of years ago with the Zlatan effect where there was a significant increase in visitors from Sweden via our ticket & hotel offering.”

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