Last week saw United celebrate mark 21 years since the arrival of the baby-faced assassin at Old Trafford. Dear Old Ole is arguably the most famous super-sub and him instinctively sticking out a leg in Camp Nou is forever etched in the memory of United fans and his place in United folklore is written in inerasable ink.
Though there is no doubt that scoring the stoppage time winner in the Champions League is Solskjaer’s greatest achievement at Old Trafford, there are numerous other instances where he rose up to the occasion and saved the game many a time. A career, unfortunately, cut short by a serious knee injury, we pause and take a trip down memory lane to relive some of the best moments of Solskjaer’s Old Trafford career.
AND SOLSKJAER HAS WON IT!
A United fan could put those five words on repeat and it will never bore them. Trailing 1-0 until the final moments of an incredible Champions League Final, United managed to bundle the ball into the back of the net courtesy of Teddy Sheringham.
Less than a minute of play had passed following the restart, United won corner. The ball was flicked at the near post. Bayern defenders must have thought the danger had passed but Solskjaer popped up at the far post and stretched every living cell of his legs to get onto the ball. The ball roared into the roof of the net.
Cue: Epic knee slide and
“AND SOLSKJAER HAS WON IT”
THE FASTEST HATRICK
One of the best individual Premier League moments belongs to Solskjaer. Four goals in 10 minutes is no mean feat. Hell, this is a tough ask on FIFA.
But not for Solskjaer. The sheer brilliance of this display, specially coming on the anniversary of the Munich Tragedy holds a special place in the hearts of the United fans. Brought on as a substitute with the game won at 4-1 and with just under 20 minutes to go, few would have expected the gunman to score, let alone hit a quadruple.
The first two goals were as easy as they would come – a side foot tap in and passing the ball into the empty net after rounding the goalie. But the third one was out of nowhere. Played in by a no-look Scholes pass (absolute brilliant piece of work by Scholesy), Ole controlled the ball with one foot and fired a volley past the helpless keeper with the other. Sheer class.
The fourth was pure luck as a Scholes miscue found its way to the Norwegian who slotted it past the onrushing keeper.
A BRILLIANT CAREER
Ole Gunnar-Solskjaer transfer took place in the same season as Alan Shearer’s world record move to Newcastle. Despite not dominating the back pages in the immediate aftermath of his move, Solskjaer let his feet do the talking on the pitch. One of the most humble players you’d meet, his willingness to play a substitute role for the team is applaudable.
Only Ryan Giggs has more appearances off the bench than the Norwegian, but no player even comes close to his tally of 29 goals off the bench.
A truly remarkable player, he would have easily crossed the 150 goal mark for United had knee injuries not blighted his career. Recurring injuries took its toll and Solskjaer retired at the age of just 34.
Here’s to a remarkable career and all the Solskjaer moments we cherish.