It’s difficult to question why Manchester United have decided to appoint Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on a permanent basis.
When Sir Alex Ferguson retired in 2013, the empowering confidence he built up at the club over nearly three decades seemed to go with him.
Solskjaer, though, has restored a sense of optimism at Old Trafford that Jose Mourinho, Louis van Gaal and David Moyes could not.
In just three months, the Norwegian has hauled the Red Devils back into the top four as well as the Champions League quarter-finals.
But perhaps most impressively, Solskjaer has maximised the influence of several key players who struggled to perform under Mourinho.
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Paul Pogba, Marcus Rashford and Victor Lindelof have been the most obvious beneficiaries since the Portuguese got the sack.
However, Solskjaer hasn’t managed to get the best from every member of his squad.
Alexis Sanchez is the most notable, not least because he’s the highest earner at the club by a considerable distance.
The Chilean – who has scored or assisted just five goals this season - reportedly earns an eye-watering £400,000-a-week.
The last of those contributions came in January’s FA Cup tie against Arsenal, and it’s clear Solskjaer doesn’t trust Sanchez to turn his form around anytime soon.
The 30-year-old has since played a total of 344 minutes across eight appearances in all competitions, casting further doubt over his future at United.
That being said, the Evening Standard claims the Old Trafford hierarchy are willing to persist with Sanchez despite the impact it may have on negotiating a new contract for David de Gea.
The report claims the Spaniard wants a deal to rival the former Arsenal star, while United are only willing to offer the best weekly wages of any goalkeeper on the planet at £350,000.
Additionally, there has been “no serious interest” from the Chinese Super League for Sanchez, which is likely the only competition he could move to without taking a major pay cut.
Swap deals have also been written off as a potential option.
With that in mind, the club wants Solskjaer to carry on helping Sanchez rediscover his best form once he returns from a knee injury in April.
The situation is unlikely to please the 46-year-old, who recently said it’s up to Sanchez to “find himself” if he wants to prove the player he was at Arsenal is still within him.
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