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Ole Was Supposed To Be In Reserves…But We Promoted Him Straight Away

In a day dedicated to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, with his testimonial against Espanyol being played tomorrow afternoon, we have looked at several of Solskjaer’s great moments with the club. As a player strongly associated with that magical night in 1999, it’s important to remember other imporant moments in his United career, such as the red card he received against Newcastle, his late goal against Liverpool in the FA Cup, as well as his successful return from injury.

Sir Alex Ferguson has today joined all those speaking in admiration for Solskjaer, reflecting on his magnificent achievements with the club.

“Ole is an inspiration to anyone hoping for a long career in football,” said Ferguson. “He has dedicated himself to his profession. In the modern-day game, anyone who manages 10 years or more at one club is exceptional, particularly when that one club is not from the player’s own country. When the fans show their respect for Ole on Saturday, it will not just be for his goal in Barcelona. It will be for his overall contribution over a very long period of time.”

Ferguson recalls what the start of Solskjaer’s career with the club was like.

“Ole came to us at 23 but I looked at him and thought he was 15,” he said. “I told him he had potential but his first season was going to be an introduction and mostly he would be playing for the reserves. But after two games, (reserve coach) Jim Ryan said I needed to put him in the first team. We made him a substitute against Blackburn the following week. He scored and was never out of the first-team squad after that.”

About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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  1. jsos says:

    legend. i dont know that all our appreciation can be packed into one day for him tomorrow. i DO like the praise fergie has been heaping on him today tho… maybe grooming a NEW man for next in line slot? ;)

  2. Kevin says:

    I only hope Ole some day grows into a great coach and can at sometime become our head coach. His service to the club is a great polar opposite to that of Ronaldo. Ole’s heart is at United while Ronaldo’s is else where. I am glad we can remember the great things United are about and for one day ignore the ugly side of football. I am excited to watch the game and celebrate one of the best players in United’s history.

  3. Patrik says:

    He would add so much to our current team, it’s a shame he got all those injuries. 20legend

  4. chrispus says:


  5. DuudeLove says:

    Eric and Ole together at the helm. What a mouthwatering combination! Eric to bring his flair, motivational speeches LOL and inventiveness whilst Ole will add his superb tactical awareness, analytical contributions, extreme professionalism and stability in case Eric goes off on one. However both will be matched by the same passion and love they have for the club which will keep what is so special about the club alive!

  6. Sagar Shah says:

    ole’s gona donate the proceeds from his testimonial match to school building project in africa.
    he stands to make around £2 million from the match. thats a considerable sum to give away.
    he’s a top man.


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