Solskjaer finally gets new job after Man Utd axe having rejected Saudi offers

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    Former Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has returned to football after landing a surprise role as UEFA technical observer.

    The 50-year-old, who was sacked by United in November 2021 after nearly three years at the helm, is still aiming for a return to management, but has shelved those plans for the time being. Solskjaer recently turned down the chance to manage Norway's women's team and revealed to The Athletic that he's had several offers to take over at Saudi Pro League clubs too.

    "I’ve had offers. Most recently, two from Saudi Arabia. My best mate, who is also my agent, sifts through them. If you’ve managed Man United, you put your own criteria about what you want to work with," he said.

    READ MORE: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer 'in talks' over managerial return – two years after Man Utd axe

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    Speaking about his new role with UEFA, Solskjaer revealed: "I’m doing a lot of coaching, four times per week, and we have three teams. I’m helping the kids, who enjoy it. You see a different side to football, the grassroots – except it’s all plastic pitches here. You see the brightness in their eyes, they listen to you, they want to learn.

    "But you start to miss it (professional football) when you see the games, either in person or on television. Since I left United, I’ve travelled around as a fan with my kids, going to places like Napoli, Milan and Dortmund to experience games. We loved it.

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    "My role with UEFA means watching Champions League matches in person. I can watch teams from a different perspective than being a manager: analyse them, solve problems, see how both teams will try to hurt each other."

    When quizzed about a return to management, the baby-faced assassin, as he was known during his playing days, insisted he wasn't wedded to working in the UK. "I love England and the Premier League. Even the Championship feels stronger than ever, but I don’t feel bound to England," he admitted. "Maybe a different challenge where I need to experience a new culture and learn a new language.

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    "The DNA and identity of the club are important, a club where I can be the best me. It has to be a match. Maybe I made the wrong decision to go to Cardiff, for example, where there was a clash of identities and styles.

    "What I miss most is working with good people, coming in every day, discussing football and putting a plan together for the next game. It’s not just about formations, but creating a culture where the staff enjoy their job and building a team together."

    Solskjaer has been linked with a number of posts since his United dismissal and it was reported earlier this year that he had rejected several offers from Premier League clubs.

    Leicester were the latest team to show an interest after considering him as a replacement for Brendan Rodgers when the Northern Irishman left the club by mutual consent back in April, though they ended up hiring Dean Smith as interim boss instead.

    • Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
    • Manchester United FC
    • Saudi Pro League
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