Manchester United: An open letter to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
I am sorry. I have failed you. I sincerely apologise for letting you down.
I let you down by not believing in y(our) team. I must have trusted the spirit of this glorious club. But no. I honestly did not think about the possibility of Manchester United playing in the quarter-finals of this year's Champions League.
I even wondered if it's worth staying awake all night to watch you try.
I am ashamed.
Heck, I even contemplated the idea of losing the race in Europe to benefit United's season in the Premier League. After all, a couple of years ago, we hardly tried to compete in the last few games of the domestic competition to concentrate more on the Europa League.
This "pragmatic" way of thinking made sense and this has been the way we have been playing recently. That is until you took over.
Last December, I didn't believe that we had a chance to finish in the top four. A quarter-finals birth in the Champions League was the last thing on my mind. I even doubted the possibility of winning the FA Cup, thanks to the late hiccup in last year's competition.
You took over. You punched me in the gut and slapped me on my face.
It's this club. It's what we do, that's Man Utd," you told the press after the match.
Ouch. That hurts.
Your late winner for United in the1999 final came to my mind when you said these words. United never say die. I should have known that. I really should have.
We were 2-0 down after the home leg. Almost a total of 10 players were injured. We were playing with a B team at Le Parc des Princes. But I still should have believed.
Because this is Manchester United. It's what we do.
You have made the club score in 21 consecutive away matches in all competitions, equalling the club record set between November 1956 and September 1957. Just when I thought that the days of Sir Alex Ferguson were gone for good, you have brought back the memories of the Busby Babes.
We might still crash and burn from here. But I will believe. I will still be waiting to witness that Fergie-time goal. Because this is Manchester United. It's what we do.
Thank you for bringing the smiles back to Old Trafford. Thank you for making Manchester United play the way they should.
A top 4 finish might not happen in the Premier League. The quarter-finals could well be the end of the road for us in Europe. Our noisy neighbours could end up lifting more trophies. But I will not lose hope. I will never say die.
You have given me hope. You have earned my trust. My faith in the club's success has taken a new high. The belief is back.
The negative mindset is gone. You have brought back the United spirit.
We needed someone to remind us of the club's culture and greatness. You are not a caretaker. You have been a caregiver. This ailing club needed someone like you to be at the wheel.
"Ole's at the wheel,
Tell me how does it feel?"
It does feel so good after a long time.
Thank you, Ole.
A Manchester United fan.