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Manchester United report: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's coaching staff compared Donny van de Beek to an unflattering Old Trafford flop

Manchester United midfielder Donny van de Beek
(Image credit: PA Images)

Manchester United coaching staff compared the struggles of Donny van de Beek under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

Those are the reports emerging from the end of Solskjaer's reign, which ended in ignominy away to Watford. Van de Beek scored the final goal of the Norwegian's Ole Trafford career in the 4-1 thumping at Vicarage Road. 

The Dutchman has struggled for game-time while in the Premier League, however, with many questioning where his future lies. Van de Beek joined from Ajax in 2020 for a fee somewhere in the region of £35m. 

Now, the midfielder is looking at leaving the club in January, unless new boss Ralf Rangnick can turn his career around.

Former United playmaker Mkhitaryan had a similar fate, signing for Jose Mourinho during his first Red Devils transfer window and struggling to gel in the team. In the end, the Armenian was used as a makeweight that brought Alexis Sanchez to Arsenal, going in the opposite direction to the Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners have since cut ties with Mkhitaryan altogether, allowing him to move on a free transfer to Roma - where Mourinho is now the manager.

Solskjaer's coaching team is still in place at United. Michael Carrick is managing the club until Rangnick's work permit is finalised, having earned a win and a draw in his first two games of management against Villarreal and Chelsea, respectively. 

Van de Beek played in the first of those matches as Bruno Fernandes was dropped. It's thought that the no.34 is going to assess how much game-time he gets in the coming weeks during Rangnick's regime and will make a decision on his future then.

Manchester United face Arsenal on Thursday. 

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Mark White

Mark White has been a staff writer on FourFourTwo since joining in January 2020, writing pieces for both online and the magazine. He is a keen player of the Football Manager series and creates Twitter accounts for his Fantasy Premier League team every year, before losing interest in his team every September.