Ole Gunnar Solskjaer isn’t afraid to shed his baby-faced assassin image in the dressing room and tell his Manchester United players that they’ve not been good enough.
Ashley Young has revealed that Solskjaer has a “horrible side” that most people don’t see, a trait the club captain believes is invaluable as manager of United.
The Norwegian has a reputation as a friendly face to many United fans, but those inside the changing room know differently, according to Young, comparing the steely streak inside him to that of Sir Alex Ferguson.
“A lot of people in the press still see him as the baby-faced assassin. But it was like I said before, when he arrived it was like the boss [Sir Alex Ferguson] had walked back through the door,” he said.
“When he gets down the business, it’s serious. At times in the dressing room, he’s had to lose it, and I think that’s right when things aren’t going well. You need to be told that.
“He’s got a nice side and a horrible side, which I feel you need. A lot is said about managers, but it’s down to the players at the end of the day.”
United are up to sixth thanks to the victory over Tottenham on Wednesday night and they travel to the Etihad for the Manchester derby tomorrow with confidence restored.
That win came on the back of disappointing draws with Sheffield United and Aston Villa and Young admits United’s consistency hasn’t been good enough.
“Consistency has been the issue,” he told Sky Sports . “Decisions or certain things we haven’t done in games – we haven’t stuck to our principles which is why we’ve not been able to get the right results.
“But everything came together in that game against Tottenham, and the confidence going into the Manchester derby will be sky-high.
“I don’t think words will be needed. Of course, it matters to the fans and it’s massive for the city. For us as players, I think everyone in the dressing room knows what it means.
“We’ve always got that ‘never-say-die’ attitude; that’s the Man United way – if the other team score one, you score two. The other team score two, you score three – that’s just how it is.”