Former Man Utd striker Robin van Persie has revealed that he would like to see a meaner side to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as he wasn’t impressed with his post-match interview after the defeat to Arsenal.
The Red Devils suffered a disappointing blow on Wednesday night having lost 2-0 at the Emirates to a direct rival in the battle for a top-four finish in the Premier League this season.
After back-to-back wins over Newcastle United and Burnley, they would undoubtedly have hoped to kick on heading into 2020 to start closing the gap on Chelsea in fourth spot and put themselves in a strong position to get back into the Champions League.
That didn’t materialise in midweek, and Van Persie took issue with Solskjaer’s natural jovial attitude in his post-match interview as seen in his comments below.
“I look at Ole and he seems like a really nice guy,” Van Persie said on BT Sport, as quoted by the Daily Mail. “I would like to see him a bit more edgy, a bit more mean at times. He’s smiling after a game like that. This is not the moment to smile.
“You need a bit of fear as well for your coach, but first you need a game plan. If you have that then you know if you don’t make those runs, if don’t past the balls, you will get punished. You will not play the next game.”
Alongside Van Persie in the BT studio was another former Man Utd player in Rio Ferdinand, and he defended his ex-teammate by suggesting that there is a different side to Solskjaer in the changing room with the players.
“There might be a different Ole in the changing room,” Ferdinand added. “That’s what you’d hope. He can be very cut throat, very cold with the things he used to say to players, but Manchester United need consistency. Big teams win 10, 15 games in a row.”
It’s difficult to disagree with Van Persie’s assessment as Solskjaer is undoubtedly a popular figure and a likeable character, but to succeed at the highest level, he’ll need that nasty streak in him too and perhaps he just opts to reserve that for behind the scenes with his squad rather than display it publicly.
"Just be angry. I see him smiling after a game like that, now is not the moment to smile."@Persie_Official wants to see a mean streak in Ole Gunnar Solskjær after Man Utd suffer defeats. pic.twitter.com/NeXbLngppH
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) January 2, 2020