Premier League

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Considers Chelsea as Manchester United's Biggest Rivals This Season

By Amreen
Solskjaer believes Chelsea is United's biggest rival this season
Solskjaer believes Chelsea is United's biggest rival this season / James Baylis - AMA/Getty Images

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer reportedly considers Chelsea as Manchester United's biggest rival this season ahead of defending Premier League champions, Manchester City.

United last won silverware in 2017, when Jose Mourinho led them to victory in the Europa League, but they have, since then, failed to launch any sort of title challenge. This summer has seen the Red Devils splash the cash on some of the biggest names in European football in an aim to close the gap between the likes of City, Liverpool, and themselves.

However, according to reports, Solskjaer holds Chelsea in higher regard after the Blues ended last season as Champions League winners. The Blues have become a defensively stronger unit under Thomas Tuchel, and have been leaking fewer goals than they did under Frank Lampard.

After just eight months in the hot-seat, Tuchel has guided Chelsea to two major cup finals, winning the Champions League but falling short in the FA Cup. They even brought back Romelu Lukaku and secured a deadline-day loan signing of Saul Niguez from Atletico Madrid.

Despite this, Solskjaer reportedly remains confident United will win silverware this season. Cristiano Ronaldo returns to Old Trafford after 12 years, and speaking last week, Gary Neville insisted Ronaldo’s return brings United into the title conversation but they will fall just short.

"I made the prediction that it would be Manchester City, Chelsea and Manchester United [in that order] and I’m not going to change that because of the signing of Ronaldo," Neville told Sky Sports. "I’m going to stick with that because I don’t think the Ronaldo signing makes them a better team than Chelsea, who were the Champions League winners last season, or Manchester City, who were 20 points clear.

"Absolutely it brings them closer to winning the title, it will absolutely get them closer. But do I think it will win them the title at this point? No I don’t. But now I’m more excited about Manchester United challenging for the title than I was maybe five or six days ago.

"I don’t think they will. I want them to. Cristiano Ronaldo and Raphael Varane will have the mentality to win United the title, there’s no doubt, but if I had to put my house on it now, do I think they’ll win the title this season? No. But I’m desperate for them to win the title. I’m just being pragmatic."