Manchester United star Marcus Rashford has insisted that he will “never lose respect” for former manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer despite the latter’s recent departure from Old Trafford.
Following last Saturday’s 4-1 defeat to Watford at Vicarage Road, United made the decision to sack Solskjaer on Sunday morning, less than 24 hours after he was booed at full-time by a section of the away support that had made the trip to Hertfordshire.
As Solskjaer walked past his players to applaud the travelling contingent and thank them for their support, boos began to ring out, solely aimed at the Norwegian.
United midfielder Bruno Fernandes quickly intervened to try and deflect the blame away from Solskjaer and onto the players, waving his arms in the direction of his fellow professionals.
It was a sad ending to Solskjaer’s tenure as United manager and one that will have no doubt hurt the Norwegian, given that he has so much love and respect for the club.
And Rashford has emphasised why fans must recognise that, when things aren’t going according to plan, the players must also take some of the criticism — supporting the message Fernandes sent.
Rashford told BBC Sport: “Ole is Man United at heart, nobody could ever say that he is not.
“For me, the respect that he deserves is huge, not just from us [the players], but the fans as well. I mention when Bruno was on the pitch, telling the fans it is not just him [Solskjaer], it’s all of us… that’s important as well.
“I feel like fans, sometimes, blame the manager. The manager can’t play for us. He can set us up in the best way that he thinks possible and our job is to do those instructions and do what we’re good at as well, and try and win games.
“It didn’t happen for us in that game but it is not right to blame the manager.
“I was in the tunnel at the time and I was happy when I saw online that Bruno had done that because it sends a message that even though things weren’t going well for us and for Ole, we still respected him. Respect is a big thing and it goes a long way.
“Ole will never lose my respect.”
Less than a week on from Solskjaer’s exit, former RB Leipzig and Hoffenheim boss Ralf Rangnick is poised to be installed as the club’s new manager on an interim basis.
Rangnick is understood to have agreed to take over at Old Trafford on a six-month deal, with his first game in charge set to be next Thursday’s home clash with Arsenal.
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