Manchester United players hold crisis talks.
Six Man United players reportedly held “crisis talks” with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer on Thursday, in a bid to salvage the club’s season.
According to the Daily Mail, the sextet of senior stars were made up of Cristiano Ronaldo, Harry Maguire, Bruno Fernandes, Luke Shaw, Victor Lindelof and Nemanja Matic.
Solskjaer aims to salvage season.
Solskjaer wanted to discuss how the team can turn around their dreadful run of form, as well as the new tactical plan that has seen Man United play with three central defenders in recent matches.
The Red Devils were already going through a poor run of results when they came up against arch-rivals Liverpool at Old Trafford on October 24th.
A 5-0 humiliation on that day appeared to be a watershed moment for the Norwegian manager, with many supporters finally accepting that he has brought the team as far as he can.
Man United on a miserable run.
However, the new formation saw Man United win their next game, 3-0 away at Tottenham Hotspur, a result that seemed to buy Solskjaer time.
A late Cristiano Ronaldo goal then rescued a point away to Atalanta in the Champions League before more misery was dumped on the club by local rivals Manchester City, who beat them 2-0 at Old Trafford in their most recent Premier League match, without needing to get out of first gear.
Of the six senior stars who met with Solskjaer, Maguire has arguably faced the most criticism, with his poor on-pitch displays being exacerbated by the fact that he is the captain of the club.
Shaw has also suffered a major drop-off in form after the heights of last season, while doubts are in place over the ability of Fernandes and Ronaldo to dovetail together.
Lindelof has returned to the team in recent matches, to accommodate the new system, and is likely to compete with Eric Bailly for the third central defensive spot alongside Maguire and Raphael Varane, when the Frenchman returns to fitness.
Pogba left out of discussions.
33-year-old Matic is very much a squad player at this point but has been often chosen to captain the team for cup matches, such as September’s Carabao Cup exit at the hands of West Ham United.
While the six aforementioned stars are clearly among the most experienced in the Old Trafford dressing room, it’s notable that Paul Pogba wasn’t asked to join the discussions as speculation surrounding his future continues to swirl.
However, the fact that Pogba is absent until the New Year with a hamstring injury may render him redundant in any short-term conversation around tactics.
The Man United squad will be looking to get back on track with a visit to Watford on Saturday afternoon.