The coach had his say on the plans to revolutionise European football with a breakaway league, which collapsed quickly amid vehement protests
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has said he did not like the concept of the Super League because sporting merit would be taken away.
United announced they were withdrawing from the league just 48 hours after it had been revealed they were one of the 12 founding members.
It was a concept driven by the owners of the 12 clubs – players and managers were not consulted before the proposals were revealed to the world on Sunday evening.
What was said?
Speaking for the first time since the announcement on Sunday, Solskjaer gave a lengthy three-minute reply as to why he didn’t like the idea.
He said: “First of all I’m very happy that the fans have voiced their opinion and that we’ve listened to them. In a strange way it’s brought the football community and pyramid together and I think that’s very important and I’m very happy. I’m a supporter myself and there will be a day I come back and watch Man Utd, and I want to watch a Man Utd with the fear of failure.
“When I thought about it, I didn’t like the concept anyway, it has to be on sporting merit I want to earn the right to play in Europe.
“We know we’ve been pioneers and we’ve been in Europe for many, many years with the Busby Babes, so that’s one part of it and we want to be part of a successful European campaign again. One of my best matches and best nights have been something we’ve worked really hard towards but then to get that that fear of failure.
“You can’t just be given it because your name is such and such, you have to earn the right to be there and to get the best possible performance. I’ve always felt and I’ve always believed stepping out of your comfort zone and being afraid of failure that spurs you on, living on the edge a little bit. That wasn’t part of this.
“For me, I’m very happy that all the clubs that have admitted their mistake, that this was a bad idea and the way that it came out as well.
“Man Utd is the biggest club in the world and we want to be part of European football, but we want to do that like my players did last season, I think they were excellent. When I talk about this fear of failure they were afraid of not making it to the Champions League because we were so many points behind.
“They pulled themselves together, came together as a team and we achieved third which was a very good achievement.
“This year we’ve worked hard, striving towards trophies and we’re second and I back my team to be in the top in Europe, but I still think that that fear of failure is helping us to do that, and being a sporting competitor as I am and my nature is not being handed things, we can’t be handed a place, that’s my opinion.”
What did Solskjaer say about Ed Woodward?
In the fall out of the announcement of the Super League it was announced executive vice-chair Woodward would be standing down at the end of the year.
Solskjaer said: “Football is emotions and emotions run high in football. I’ve had a very very good working relationship with Ed. The club will have to move on without him, and I’m sure Man Utd will always move on. I’ll work as long as Man Utd want me to work here and hopefully we can end the season successfully, and Ed is part of that.”
What did Solskjaer say about the Glazer family?
The United boss was asked about the owners and the way the club is run, but did not really get into it.
He replied: “I’ve said what I’ve said about the Super League and I’m so happy all the clubs involved agreed it was a mistake.
“I’ve always had a good relationship with the club and the owners. Behind the walls of the building we speak and they listen to my opinions and we’re working to move Man Utd forward.
“It’s important that we all want to be better and improve and that’s my job to improve the results and performances of the team and this weekend is a good chance and it’s a big game in our history we know that.”
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