Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been appointed Manchester United manager on a three-year deal after a successful stint as caretaker, the club have announced.
The former United striker has reversed their fortunes since leaving Norwegian club Molde to replace Jose Mourinho in December, reaching the quarterfinals of the Champions League and battling for a place in the Premier League top four.
In his first press conference as Manchester United manager, Ole vowed to turn United into champions again. Asked if winning the title for the first time since Sir Alex Ferguson’s final season in 2013, he said:
‘Definitely. To lift the Premier League trophy again is what we expect, what we are used to, what we have done so many times. We can’t wait too many years but it won’t happen overnight.
‘The Premier League title is vital for us. I know we will be successful but it’s about taking it step by step.
‘As a striker, I was always an optimist and thinking positive. You look back in your own memory bank and what it feels like to be a winner and a champion. I can’t wait to see these players getting that feeling.
‘The day I walk out of the door, I hope it is with a smile on my face and I have given the supporters, the staff, the players, the club, a good time. That is all I can do All I can promise, all I’ve promised to the owners, to Ed (Woodward), everyone, I will always be myself.
‘I am not going to change. I will be an optimist and positive guy and we will do this together. I just want to be the best Ole.’
Asked if he has contacted Ferguson, Solskjaer added:
‘Yeah, I have. I’m not going to discuss what we spoke about but it’s one of the first phone calls you make when things were decided.’
‘When people get a new job and say it’s a dream job, that’s more true to me than anyone. This has been my ultimate dream all the time. Maybe a naive dream, but I’ve always had that dream in my mind to have this responsibility for this huge, fantastic, family football club. I’m honoured and privileged to lead us forward.
‘I’m just going to be myself. I know the expectations of the club, the history, and of course I want to be successful and lift trophies. I can’t wait to get onto the challenge of improving this great bunch of players. It’s a squad full of potential. We’ve got a way to go towards lifting a trophy. There’s a mountain to climb but we have done before.’
Solskjaer confirmed that his No 2 Mike Phelan is likely to stay on as well, although Ferguson’s former assistant would need to negotiate his departure from Central Coast Mariners in Australia where he is still sporting director.
He said: ‘Mick is a key part of the set-up and they are talking to each other, I’ve voiced my opinion about the set-up we have now. The staff we have work so well together and it’s key to having success. I’m not looking to make any changes.’