Manchester United are hoping to challenge for the Premier League title next season.
There is quiet optimism that the Red Devils could conquer England if they invest in key areas this summer with the likes of Jadon Sancho, Raphael Varane and Declan Rice linked with a move
And with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer approaching three years at Old Trafford, the Norwegian can expect the fans to start demanding their first real title challenge since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement.
Man Utd under Solskjaer
However, to Solskjaer’s credit, he has certainly brought about consistent progress since he replaced Jose Mourinho as far as the club’s Premier League finishes are concerned.
Having laboured to a sixth place finish in his debut campaign, though you can hardly lay the blame at his feet for that, Solskjaer has since commanded United to third and second in the table.
It doesn’t take a world-class mathematician to tell you that the next step for the Red Devils would be top spot, but it’s worth taking stock of the journey that United have been on to reach this point.
When Man Utd were in a ‘relegation race’
Besides, we suspect that many fans forget that it was less than two years ago that United were genuinely being touted for a Premier League relegation scrap – and we’re not even kidding.
Eight games into the 2019/20 season and United were sitting in 12th place, closer to the relegation zone than the Champions League spots with a record of two wins, three draws and three defeats.
In fact, the situation was so dire that ESPN hilariously included United in their ‘relegation race’ show in October 2019 alongside the likes of Norwich City, Bournemouth, Watford and Sheffield United.
Pundits Alejandro Moreno and Ross Dyer talked through a board that essentially suggested that United were more likely to go down than Burnley, Crystal Palace, Wolves and West Ham. Mental.
“They’re all in a relegation battle,” Moreno declared. “All of them and that includes Manchester United. Yes, it’s only eight games, but there’s reason to be worried for all of these teams.”
Man Utd eventually finished 3rd
It makes for a staggering watch when you consider United fans are hungry for Premier League glory 20 months later, though, to be fair, there was never any true threat of relegation.
Besides, by the time Bruno Fernandes arrived at the club three months down the line, United started hoovering up points like they were going out of fashion and swaggered to a top-four finish.
It really goes to show that things can change in a flash when it comes to the Premier League and to be fair to Solskjaer, he’s taken United on quite the journey since he took over back in 2018.