5 Brave Tactical Changes Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Made At Man Utd

5 Brave Tactical Changes Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Made At Man Utd

Just a few days into Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's new post, Manchester United played with renewed confidence, zip and ruthlessness as they ran riot in South Wales.

Here we take a look at some bold changes Solskjaer made following the 5-1 win against Cardiff.

Hands-on coaching

Solskjaer spent more time sitting down standing on the touchline on Saturday but when he got to his feet, he often called a player over.

Phil Jones, Jesse Lingard and Anthony Martial all got some one-on-one instructions from the 45-year-old who is still making a difference from the bench all these years later.

Solskjaer was not unsympathetic to taking on board instructions from his coaches, either, and Mike Phelan was frequently in his ear and gesticulating how United could cut Cardiff open again.

Solskjaer was happy for Sir Alex Ferguson's former No.2 to take up position on the touchline while he sat down.

One-touch play

With such an emphasis on rondos in the warm-up, it was barely a surprise United kept things short and sharp in possession.

At one point in the first half, they had 76% possession – which has surely not always been the case against newly-promoted sides.

Most significantly, they were making all that possession count.

United were particularly overwhelming on the break and Jesse Lingard, Paul Pogba, Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial were all encouraged to rotate in a fluid front line.

Victor Lindelof‘s role

Victor Lindelof was given a rare outing on his natural side at right-sided centre-back and the Swede was encouraged to cross the halfway line at will to efficiently give United an ‘extra' man when bringing the ball out.

Victor Lindelof

For so long Mourinho lamented how he did not have a ball-playing defender who could build from the back but Lindelof, without doubt, did that against Cardiff.

Effective pressing

One of the first instructions Solskjaer gave to his team was to push up and press higher up the field, which is easier said than done when you are low in confidence.

United were aggressive – both Ashley Young and Luke Shaw continuously bombed forward – and they hunted in packs in the final third when out of possession.

Recalling Paul Pogba

Solskjaer earlier vowed to build the team around Paul Pogba if he was ever United manager and he proved a man of his word by recalling the World Cup winner, who was an unused substitute in the previous two league fixtures.

There were a couple of wild passes early on, but the Frenchman grew into this game and his sublime assist set up United's second through Ander Herrera.

Clearly, Solskjaer and Pogba are on the same page and expect the 25-year-old to continue to flourish in the coming weeks.

This article was most recently revised and updated 2 months ago

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