Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has shed further light on why Manchester United have given a senior coaching role to Darren Fletcher.
United brought their former midfielder back in a coaching capacity in October to work with their under-16 team.
Fletcher previously had a 20-year association with the club as a player. He made more than 300 appearances for them in all competitions.
He retired from professional football in 2019 after spells with West Brom and Stoke. But he soon found himself back at Old Trafford.
United announced earlier this week that Fletcher had been promoted to a first-team coaching role under Solskjaer’s leadership.
Now, Solskjaer has explained why he wanted to integrate his former teammate into his coaching setup.
“It’s good to have him back,” Solskjaer told ManUtd.com. “Fletch has been very important to this club for many years.
“I’ve known him since he was a young boy coming through as a 16-year-old and [former assistant] Mark Dempsey, he’s moved down to the Academy helping out there more.
“We had an opening, an open spot and with Darren having been away for a few years I thought it was important that we brought him in, because he’s got very many good opinions and ideas about football and I thought he’s been in with the [under-]16s, starting his coaching.
“We felt it was right bringing him in now.”
Solskjaer on former players becoming coaches
Fletcher is the latest in a long line of former United players to take up coaching roles with the club. Indeed, manager Solskjaer is one himself.
Michael Carrick and Mike Phelan are key parts of his staff, while Nicky Butt is another to have taken on a role with the club after his playing career.
Solskjaer thinks it is important to have people who understand what it takes to succeed at United, but admitted it was not an absolute requirement for anyone working at the club.
“I think it’s important that we know what we are working for and working towards,” he continued.
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“Many of us we’ve been successful here, we’ve won trophies, we’ve been here for many, many years and we know what it takes to be a Man Utd player and coach. I like that idea. It’s not a must.
“We know what kind of values we want. It says in the word United: we are a team. We stay together and it’s a joy coming in and seeing these lads work every day.
“They help the players improve individually and spend so much energy on trying to improve the team as well. It’s a fantastic group.”
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