Martin Keown believes Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is in pole position to become United's permanent manager
- The Norwegian has replaced Jose Mourinho in the United dugout in December.
- He's set to leave Old Trafford at the end of his six-month interim spell.
- However, former Gunner Keown claims a top 4 finish will be see the 45-year-old's United tenure extended.
Speaking ahead of United's Sunday clash against Tottenham Wembley, former Arsenal defender Keown said: "For me, Ole is already in the box seat for the United job and beating Spurs will only enhance his credentials.
"It is doing a disservice to say that all he has done is put smiles back on faces. He has injected the traditions of this great football club back into a group of players who had lost their way. It feels like a giant has been awoken from a deep sleep."
Some of the staff that hadn't seen Solskjær in at least four years were touched that he remembered their children's names. One coach at academy level said he had spoke to Ole more in one morning than he did with Mourinho in 18 months #mulive [james ducker]— utdreport (@utdreport) January 11, 2019
Keown even compared the Norwegian with England's head coach Gareth Southgate. He continued: "There are parallels between Solskjaer's return to Manchester United and Southgate with England.
"For a long time, Gareth had been earmarked as the FA's man but he was thrust into the top job in exceptional circumstances. Solskjaer cut his teeth as a coach at United soon after he retired, has gone away and forged a career in Norway and is now back at Old Trafford."
Solskjaer: "Every single day and every single game will get us closer and we'll have more understanding of how we want to play. Obviously the last five games haven't been too bad, but there are always things to work on." #MUFC— Manchester United (@ManUtd) January 10, 2019
Keown believes a top 4 finish will be enough to convince Ed Woodward to make Solskjaer's interim spell permanent. He added: "Beat Spurs on Sunday and United will genuinely believe they can break into the top four. Do that, and it will be incredibly difficult for the club to give the job to anyone else."
It's worth pointing out that Molde are waiting for the Norwegian to come back. Molde managing director Oystein Neerland has a plan to see Ole back in Norway by the time the local league has already kicked in.