Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s five best moments as Man Utd boss after signing new deal

Two and a half years have passed since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was first handed the keys to Old Trafford on an interim basis following the sacking of Jose Mourinho, and that stint has been littered with both highs and lows.

It seems fitting to focus on the highs on a day where Man Utd have confirmed the manager has signed a new deal that secures his future for the next three years.

Though perhaps slower than much of the Man Utd faithful would have hoped, progress has undeniably been made under Solskjaer since he took over the United hotseat in December 2018.

The Red Devils finished second in the Premier League last season, though still some distance behind fierce rivals and 'noisy neighbours' Man City, while Solskjaer guided United to their first cup final since the 2017 Europa League final, though fell short in the same competition against Villarreal.

With that being said, Daily Star Sport has taken a look at the five best moments of Solskjaer's reign as United boss as Red Devils fans hope for plenty more over the next three years.

1 – That night in Paris

Even the most optimistic of United fans were hardly hopeful when they made the trip to the Parc Des Princes for the second leg of their 2019 Champions League Round of 16 clash with Paris Saint-Germain.

Trailing 2-0 from the first leg at Old Trafford, the French giants armed with two away goals, it was quite the uphill battle for Solskjaer's side.

However, a brace from Romelu Lukaku either side of Juan Bernat's strike for the hosts left the tie poised for a dramatic finish – it did not disappoint.

In trademark United fashion, the Red Devils struck late, in the 94th minute to be precise, when Marcus Rashford stepped up to lash his last-gasp penalty beyond Gianluigi Buffon to send United through to the next round.

2 – Signing Bruno Fernandes

Few individual signings have seemingly transformed the fortunes of an entire club quite like Bruno Fernandes did upon his arrival in Manchester.

Solskjaer was forced to fend off interest from fellow Premier League outfit Tottenham Hotspur to secure Fernandes, but reaped the benefits when he eventually did.

The Portugal international has bagged 26 goals in the Premier League alone from midfield since his arrival in January of last year.

Fernandes' impact since his arrival has often been likened to that of Eric Cantona's, with the playmaker going on to break the record for goal contributions for a midfielder in a calendar year.

The signing of Fernandes was arguably the most crucial factor in United's top-four finish for the 2019/20 season, securing them Champions League qualification.

3 – His record against the 'noisy neighbours'

What has been Solksjaer's biggest achievement as Man Utd boss? Have your say here.

While ultimately, Man City have had the last laugh both over United and the entire league given they have won three of the last four Premier League titles, in terms of individual local derbies United actually boast the upper hand since Solskjaer's arrival.

Solskjaer has met Guardiola on eight different occasions since his appointment, with the Norwegian winning four, losing three and one Premier League clash just before the turn of the year resulting in a draw.

Man City have not beaten their fierce rivals in the league since Solskjaer's first Manchester derby in April 2019, since then United have won the bulk of their league meetings, including two famous 2-0 away victories at the Etihad.

4 – Solskjaer's man-management

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"His man-management is second to none, the way he conducts himself in terms of how he speaks to the players, it gets the best out of them." The words of United full-back Luke Shaw, who has arguably been the biggest benefactor of Solksjaer's arrival.

Cast aside under predecessor Jose Mourinho, Shaw has found a new lease of life under Solskjaer and has gone from strength to strength as a result, establishing himself as arguably the best left-back in the league.

Paul Pogba is yet another player who butted heads with Mourinho, yet has publicly gone on record in his support of Solskjaer, even pitting the two against each other earlier this year.

"What I have now with Ole is different because he wouldn’t go against the players,” Pogba told Sky Sports in April.

"Maybe Ole wouldn’t pick them, but it’s not like he puts them on the side like they don’t exist any more. That’s the difference between Mourinho and Ole."

5 – Europa League clash with Roma

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One shadow that has loomed particularly large over Solskjaer's tenure is his inability to get past the semi-final stage of any competition.

Having led United to four semi-finals in succession, Solskjaer had lost all four before he finally reached a breakthrough against Roma in last-terms Europa League.

While fellow Premier League outfit Arsenal crashed out at the hands of Villarreal, partly due to too much tinkering with their starting eleven, United blew Roma away 6-2 at Old Trafford with a starting eleven that boasted Paul Pogba, Bruno Fernandes, Edinson Cavani and Marcus Rashford, three of whom got on the scoresheet.

Though the final fell the way of Villarreal, Solksjaer finally rid himself of the semi-final hoodoo.

Get your hands on your club's special edition 2021/22 annual. Find out more here.

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