Ole Gunnar Solskjaer sacked: Harry Maguire says he will be ‘forever grateful’ to Norwegian


Harry Maguire admitted he will be ‘forever grateful’ for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s impact on his career after the Norwegian was sacked by Manchester United on Sunday.

Solskjaer’s departure from Old Trafford was confirmed on Sunday morning in the wake of an abject 4-1 defeat at Watford that was United’s fifth defeat in seven Premier League matches. 

Maguire, who was sent off in Saturday evening’s defeat, thanked Solskjaer for giving him ‘the biggest honour in football’ by handing him the Manchester United captaincy and described him as a ‘legend’.

Harry Maguire (left) has thanked ‘legend’ Ole Gunnar Solskjaer after the Manchester United boss was sacked on Sunday

Maguire tweeted at 2.30pm on Sunday: ‘You signed me for the best club in the world and gave me the biggest honour in football. Huge respect and forever grateful. Thank you for everything boss. Legend.’ 

Marcus Rashford was the first current Manchester United player to respond to the manager’s sacking, hailing the Norwegian as a ‘club legend’. 

Three hours after the news broke at 11am, Rashford posted a picture of himself shaking hands with Solskjaer on the training ground and the words ‘club legend’ alongside a heart emoji.

Goalkeeper David de Gea also posted a Twitter message just before 2pm that read: ‘You always gave everything and everyone knows you are a legend at @ManUtd.’ 

But there was radio silence from other members of the squad as the news filtering through on Sunday.

Former United players Gary Neville, Patrice Evra and Ander Herrera were among those who took to social media to react to Solskjaer’s exit.

Marcus Rashford was the first current United player to respond to the sacking news on Sunday

Marcus Rashford was the first current United player to respond to the sacking news on Sunday

Forward Rashford described Solskjaer as a 'club legend' in a Twitter post after his dismissal

Forward Rashford described Solskjaer as a ‘club legend’ in a Twitter post after his dismissal

England international Rashford, 24, prospered almost immediately when Solskjaer came in to replace the sacked Jose Mourinho in December 2018.

He scored in Solskjaer’s first match as manager, a 5-1 win over Cardiff, and went on a scoring run to help the Norwegian get the job on a permanent basis.

It was Rashford’s dramatic last-minute penalty that completed a staggering Champions League comeback against Paris Saint-Germain to set the seal on Solskjaer’s appointment.

Rashford followed that up with 22 goals and 12 assists in the 2019-20 season – Solskjaer’s first full campaign in charge -despite an absence with a back injury.

Solskjaer waves farewell to the United fans after Saturday's 4-1 thrashing at Watford

Solskjaer waves farewell to the United fans after Saturday’s 4-1 thrashing at Watford

The forward then contributed 21 goals and 15 assists last season as United finished second in the Premier League and reached the final of the Europa League.

Having missed the beginning of the current campaign to undergo shoulder surgery following Euro 2020, Rashford netted against Leicester, Atalanta and Tottenham in recent weeks.

But a terrible run of results meant Solskjaer was fired with Michael Carrick taking over in a caretaker role for the upcoming games.

First team coach Michael Carrick (middle) will replace Solskjaer for the next games before the club appoints an interim coach for the rest of the season

First team coach Michael Carrick (middle) will replace Solskjaer for the next games before the club appoints an interim coach for the rest of the season

Zinedine Zidane and Brendan Rodgers are among candidates to succeed Solskjaer as United manager.

Former United defender Neville thanks Solskjaer for ‘restoring some soul’ at United .

Posting on Twitter, the Sky Sports pundit said: ‘Thank you Ole. You did us proud. The last two months were tough but before that you restored some soul into the club.’ 

Evra, another former United defender and team-mate of Solskjaer, wrote on Twitter: ‘Thank you for making us believe in @ManUtd again my friend…’

Ander Herrera, the ex-United midfield, posted a picture of himself hugging Solskjaer on Instagram and wrote: ‘One of the best people I have met in football. All the best Ole.’ 

Rio Ferdinand took to social media to say that Solskjaer’s United exit was ‘inevitable’.

Ferdinand shared a lengthy video on Twitter saying he wasn’t surprised by the decision but admitted it was ‘not the way he wanted it to end’ for Solskjaer. 

Rio Ferdinand spoke candidly in a lengthy video on Twitter. He said: ‘Morning guys. Yeah we’ve woken up to the news the Ole has now left Manchester United. 

‘He is no longer the manager. We discussed this in the studio yesterday with Jake and Coley after the Chelsea Leicester game and this has been inevitable this season. 

‘The way the team have gone backwards since the start of the season after a very very excitable transfer window with some big huge names coming in, it’s not the way we wanted it to end. 

‘It’s not the way we wanted it to go. I said at the beginning, it looked inevitable the last few weeks – especially after Manchester United losing at home to Liverpool in the manor they did. 

Ferdinand shared a lengthy video on Twitter saying he wasn't surprised by the decision but admitted it was 'not the way he wanted it to end' for Solskjaer

Ferdinand shared a lengthy video on Twitter saying he wasn’t surprised by the decision but admitted it was ‘not the way he wanted it to end’ for Solskjaer

‘Also again in the manner they did again Manchester City. I thought maybe then would have been the time but the international break came and we waited. Then you think actually he can get things right and it could change again but what we saw against Watford yesterday was terrible. 

‘So, I’m not surprised this morning. Disappointed obviously in the way the team has performed. Unfortunate for someone like Ole but it’s the way football goes. It the world of football goes. It’s a cut throat industry. 

‘If things aren’t going according to plan, big decisions are made and we saw that this morning. Where they go from here now…we have to wait and see. It’s a waiting game now.’   

Meanwhile, David Beckham Tweeted saying: ‘The most gracious man in the room…’ and Patrice Evra wrote: ‘Thank you for making us believe in Manchester United again. People forget really quickly.’ 



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