Cristiano Ronaldo’s move to Manchester United puts massive pressure on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, says Paul Parker

The 100 per cent guarantee is Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is under even more pressure now to achieve something now that Ronaldo is in the team.

He has got every Manchester United fan out there who will be looking for silver and every non-United fan will be questioning Ole even more if he doesn’t deliver a trophy.

Generally Ronaldo is in teams that win things. Even forgetting about the media Solskjaer is under immense pressure to achieve something. Getting to a final is not enough anymore.

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Solskjaer has to win something. Ronaldo will be seen as the number one. He hasn’t just come to United to help them sell shirts and say hello to Sir Alex Ferguson again.

He’s gone there to win another golden boot and maybe a Premier League title because he wants everyone at United to not forget how great he was for them before.

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We haven’t really seen the best of Jadon Sancho yet with his substitute appearances he was very poor against Wolves in his first start – as were the rest of the team.

We know that Mason Greenwood has maybe gone down the pecking order at centre forward. He can play on the wings and cross. Marcus Rashford doesn’t cross and the problem is United are not a team that normally do cross the ball. Crosses come in from Luke Shaw, not regularly from Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

They are going to have to change their style of play and if Solskjaer still persists with two holding players then that will cause a problem. If Solskjaer keeps it the same then he will have to ask wide players to deliver the ball early. Ronaldo thrives on early crosses. He’ll make runs and movements and he’ll react when you are in a position to deliver.

The players around him have got to get used to it. If you don’t start giving him what he wants he will certainly let you know. He may cause a little bit of disharmony in the dressing room because of his demands.


The biggest concern for some players and the fans may be if they see Ronaldo leading Ole into some of the decisions. You see with the Portuguese manager [Fernando Santos] how he leads him so that will be the biggest concern if that was to happen. I think he’s got enough respect for Sir Alex, United and Solskjaer to let him make decisions about players in and around him.

Ole won’t be able to think he’s 36 years of age and think he can rest him. He is going to want to win that golden boot. As much as his countryman Fernandes takes penalties I’m sure Fernandes enjoys scoring goals and the adulation that comes with it.

Ole should be standing with him to carry on taking penalties. There’s been no doubt about him taking penalties. You just don’t change something that’s so good.

He’s very good with free-kicks in and around the box, too. He hits the target more than Ronaldo does. You shouldn’t change something that’s been so strong for United in the last 18 months, but we have to wait and see how strong Ole is going to be in that situation. Or is Fernandes going to feel obliged to turn around and put everything down as say ‘he can take them’.

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31/08/2021 AT 08:35

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