Five words which make any United fan beam. “…and Solskjaer has won it.” Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is the man who “put the ball in the German’s net” and who gave us the greatest memory we have as United fans. United were a goal down when the injury time board was held up, showing just three minutes, but when the final whistle went, we were ready to get our hands on the European Cup. That moment was absolutely priceless. Nothing will ever rival that moment for me, but Solskjaer believes that our current team certainly has the ability to rival and surpass all that was achieved by our 1999 squad.
He has today spoken out about his hope for United’s future, claiming he believes we now have the potential to go on not only to win this European Cup, but several more over the coming years. When looking at the players we had back then, Roy Keane, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and David Beckham all in their prime, as well as the likes of Jaap Stam, Peter Schmeichel, Dwight Yorke and Andy Cole, it was hard to imagine a better side.
However, as Ferguson has said several times this season, our current squad is the best we’ve ever had. The likes of Anderson, Nani, Carlos Tevez and Louis Saha are likely to take a place on the bench, which was held by Jonathan Greening, David May and Phil Neville back in ’99. We have the strength in depth Fergie has craved throughout his years as United manager, and there is real belief that this is the team to win the third European Cup we have been longing for since our victory 9 years ago.
“This will hopefully be the start of something more than we achieved,” Solskajer said today. “The 1999 team achieved it once. It was a fantastic feeling. The memories of that night stick with you forever. I wanted to experience more of them and believed we could. Now nine years have passed before the club could get back to a final. This side can win it and hopefully start something bigger. You want the players to get the feeling that this is where we want to be every year. Hopefully it will inspire them and motivate them to believe what they really can achieve because I believe this team and these players can achieve a lot more. I think this team could go on to win more Champions Leagues than us in 1999 because of the talent and the age of the players.”
Do you think a victory in Europe next week could be the first of several Champions League titles for this squad?