Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: Gary Neville and Micah Richards go head-to-head about Man Utd boss

  • Kobe Tong

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is coming under fire from every angle at Manchester United right now.

On the back of a tepid 2-0 loss to Manchester City in the Premier League, the calls for the Norwegian to be sacked as head coach are intensifying, but the club seem to be sticking by him.

And with Tottenham Hotspur having newly recruited a world-class manager in Antonio Conte, many fans are calling for United to follow suit in the belief that Solskjaer cannot take them any further.

Neville defends his Solskjaer view

However, in amongst all the debate surrounding Solskjaer's future at Old Trafford, Gary Neville has been forced to defend himself amid criticism for refusing to call for managers to be sacked.

Writing on LinkedIn last week, Neville penned: "In my role as a pundit (yes I’m just a pundit) I have never asked for a manager to be sacked in 11 years on sky. I never will.

"I don’t believe anyone would ask for a friend to lose their job whilst in a company they weren’t part of or have a shareholding in. It’s just unthinkable."

Man Utd 0-2 Man City Match Reaction (Football Terrace)

Debate in the Sky studio

Fair play, Gary, because somebody losing their job is never insignificant or trivial regardless of whether you're pulling pints or managing United, but it's fair to say that not everybody has been on the same page.

And although Micah Richards was very clear to explain that he similarly isn't calling for Solskjaer to be sacked during Sky's coverage this weekend, he certainly had a difference of opinion with Neville.

In fact, despite neither pundit calling for Solskjaer's departure, they still went head-to-head in discussion about the United manager during a fascinating exchange after the City defeat.

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Richards and Neville go head-to-head

While Neville largely pointed his finger at the Old Trafford hierarchy, Richards was keen to probe the United legend on whether he thought another manager could do a better job than Solskjaer.

All in all, it made for a gripping passage of television with Richards becoming incredibly animated and Roy Keane, Graeme Souness and Kelly Cates all pilling in at one point or another.

You can check out one of the flash points of the conversation to go viral on Twitter down below, but also keep scrolling if you fancy tucking into the full back and forth between Neville and Richards.

Gripping television - fans react

Football is ultimately a game of opinions and although Richards and Neville are largely on similar wavelengths here, it made for such a gripping watch seeing them talk out their disagreements.

Therefore, it should come as no surprise that the debate continued into the comments sections and it was clear that many fans were growing tired of Neville's defence of his former teammate.

One commenter quipped: "Gary’s twisting everyone’s opinion to shield Ole from criticism."

Another piled in, saying: "Micah is talking more sense than Neville."

A third remarked: "Sorry but is anyone actually baffled as to how the only person talking sense about our club… is a former City defender!? BIG UP Micah for seeing what we all can."

While, on the contrary, another joked: "Micah: 'I'm not saying United should sack Ole, but they need a new manager.'"


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A complex situation

It goes to show the conversation spans far beyond the question of 'Should Solskjaer be sacked?' because it's clear that Richards is coming down harder than Neville without calling for blood.

In reality, though, as Neville alluded to, the only realistic solution that United can conjure up in relation to what Richards was arguing would be to show Solskjaer the door.

In the absence of a time machine to either appoint a different manager in 2019 or at least to not give Solskjaer a contract extension, United face the tough decision of whether or not to swing the axe.


And regardless of Neville or Richards' argument being more persuasive, that means the prospect of a respected individual potentially losing their job, which is never something to be taken lightly.



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