Manchester United as a club have certainly seen a downward spiral as they face the start of the next decade. The Red Devils started the 2010s still very much in control domestically, even if their European hopes had ceased to taste the brilliance of the yesteryears.
However, with Sir Alex Ferguson’s departure in 2013, the collapse began and manager after manager failed to bring the outfit back to its hallowed brilliance, even as other teams stepped up to the task and filled the vacuum created by their fall.
Multiple gaffers tried their best to lead the club back to wining ways, with Jose Mourinho arguably coming closest to the task.
Close to a year ago, the Special One was sacked, commencing Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s reign at the club.
Now, Mark Ogden of ESPN shares an interesting statistical comparison.
So Solskjaer one point worse off than Mourinho at same stage last season (when Jose was sacked), but 4 pts off top four rather than 13. Statistics for whatever your point of view…
— Mark Ogden (@MarkOgden_) December 15, 2019
The points in question sure do paint a damaging picture of Solskjaer’s rebuilding project at Old Trafford. In particular, their recent 1-1 draw to Everton appeared to hold the same woes that have plagued them for much of this season.
However, the standout difference between the two regimes at the same time is that Mourinho’s United was spiraling into toxicity. The rapport issues between the Portuguese gaffer and the United players, particularly Paul Pogba, were becoming painfully obvious.
In contrast, Solskjaer’s tenure still holds plenty of hope, with the performance of the academy graduates painting a promising picture of the future.
However, it cannot be denied that this deficit ought to be overturned to some extent before the end of the season. United must still compete for a top four finish as well as target the Europa League title. Achieving Champions League football for the next season is the only way the rebuilding follies of this campaign can be properly made peace with.