Manchester United caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has the same principles as Sir Alex Ferguson and is helping to restore the club’s “DNA”, says Michael Carrick.
Solskjaer was appointed in December until the end of the season following the sacking of Jose Mourinho, and has guided them to within two points of the top four of the Premier League, as well as a memorable Champions League last-16 victory over PSG.
The former United striker is now the overwhelming favourite to become the club’s next permanent manager, and Carrick – who is part of Solskjaer’s coaching staff – sees similarities between him and the legendary Ferguson.
He told The Times: “[They have the] same principles. Ole’s team-talks are big on hard work [as Ferguson’s were].
“He delivers it his way. That’s the club’s way, the DNA of Manchester United: an exciting, positive, winning performance, where you take risks, you go for it.
“Work ethic, humility – the United way is not ‘we’re better than you’. We just have to work harder. The best teams United had over the years always had an unbelievable work ethic.”
Solskjaer’s biggest achievement since taking charge at Old Trafford is undoubtedly leading United to their 3-1 win away to PSG, overturning a 2-0 home defeat in the first leg and guiding them to a place in the last eight of the Champions League in the process.
Carrick believes the win in the Parc des Princes – sealed courtesy of a stoppage-time penalty by Marcus Rashford – will go down in the club’s history.
“You can’t put a price on that feeling. I can try to play it down all I want, you try to forget about it, move on, but it was one of those nights that in a few months’ time, a few years, we’ll look back and go ‘wow, that was special’,” said Carrick.
“The buzz of winning was incredible. The dressing room was bouncing. The lads were all singing ‘Ole’s at the wheel’. Sir Alex and Eric [Cantona] were in there, so the lads started singing Cantona songs.
“Everyone, young kids to grandmas, come up to me in the street and say ‘this is great’. Especially after Paris. Paris was massive.”