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Watch: Brian Kerr And Damien Delaney Strongly Disagree On Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's Time At Man United

Watch: Brian Kerr And Damien Delaney Strongly Disagree On Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's Time At Man United
Eoin Harrington
By Eoin Harrington
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Manchester United are in their fifth semi-final in two years, as they face Roma in the Europa League semi-finals. Virgin Media were covering the first-leg live on Tuesday night, and pundits Brian Kerr and Damien Delaney strongly disagreed on United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's and the successes (or lack thereof) of his time in charge of United so far.

Solskjaer is coming to the end of his second full season in charge, but he is yet to take home any silverware. His side lost at the semi-final stage of the FA Cup, Carabao Cup and Europa League last season, and also came up short against Man City in this year's Carabao Cup semi-finals.

Damien Delaney was on punditry duty for Virgin Media, and he said that he doesn't see Solskjaer as an "elite-level coach" and that he needs to win a trophy before he can be seen in a positive light at United.

I've nailed my thoughts to the mast, so to speak. I don't think he's a guy. I don't think he's an elite-level coach. When you look at the coaches we saw on Tuesday, Wednesday night - not to say that he can't get there, but he's learning, how long does he get?

He came out with a statement recently that he doesn't need a trophy before he marks his success. Marcelo Bielsa came out with something before the Leeds game, a really interesting thing when he was asked about Solskjaer and his tactics - very simple.

Delaney said that Solskaer's insistence on playing Fred and Scott McTominay in a double defensive pivot, along with those 'simple' setups, are not the way to get to cup finals.


But it was Delaney's suggestion that United's style of play is not enjoyable to watch that riled up Brian Kerr, who rushed to the defence of Solskjaer. He was particularly keen to praise Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood.


Kerr: That's not fair that there's nothing enjoyable about watching Rashford or Greenwood when he's playing well. Bruno Fernandes? No, that's not...well, what do you want? Do you want tanner ball football?

Delaney: You want them to be winning trophies.

Kerr: Well, that's different from saying they're not interesting to watch!

Brian Kerr amusingly pointed out that it's hard to say with certainty that Bielsa's comments were not misconstrued, given that he doesn't speak English and employs a translator. Host Tommy Martin was resigned to sitting back and enjoying the chaos of the studio debate.

There will be many Man United fans on either side of this debate, but it cannot be denied that the semi-final with Roma is a pivotal moment in Solskjaer's reign in charge of the club. Five semi-final defeats in a row have put the pressure on ahead of the two-legged tie, but Kerr noted that they have come up against strong sides in each of those defeats.

Kerr: Well, we've seen them get knocked out of this semi-final. But who beat them? They were beaten twice by Man City and they were beaten by Chelsea. They were beaten by Sevilla last year and he [Solskjaer] was right, they should have beaten Sevilla last year!

Delaney: But they didn't!

Kerr: No they didn't, you're right.

Delaney: And they're second in the league. Manchester United are about winning!

The truth is that both are right. Though there has been progress under Solskjaer, it will not be a successful time at the club until he has trophies under his belt. Kerr's argument about facing strong teams in the semi-finals is also a bit empty - if you hit the last four of a competition, you have to expect to play the best teams.

Man United are the clear bookies' favourites to win the Europa League this year, but if they fail to progress against Roma over two legs, the jury will well and truly be out.

SEE AL SO: Brian Kerr's Comments Were The Highlight Of A Crazy Champions League Night

Virgin Media pundit Brian Kerr, with inserts of incidents from Wednesday's Champions League semi-final between PSG and Man City.


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