Jones: ‘Breath of fresh air’ Solskjaer has the lads ‘buzzing’

Phil Jones says Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been a “breath of fresh air” at Manchester United.

The 1999 treble hero was rewarded for his exceptional caretaker stint with a contract to stay on as Jose Mourinho’s permanent successor for the next three seasons.

There was a celebratory atmosphere ahead of Watford’s visit to Old Trafford on Saturday, when Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial goals sealed a narrow 2-1 win on an uncomfortable afternoon.

Solskjaer knows it was a “sloppy” display and Jones accepts it was far from their best, but the long-serving defender is excited for the future and loving life under the Norwegian.

“The lads are buzzing,” the England international said. “He’s come in, he’s been a breath of fresh air for us. He’s put arms around the shoulders of people who needed it.

“His man management skills are terrific and he’s definitely what we need going forward. Everyone can see that (he has laid foundations).

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“The fans, the media, everyone can see what he’s done and how he wants to play since he has come, and we’ve shown that in quite a few games.

“It’s positive, we’re looking forward and we’re pleased with the result.”

Jones was happy with how United dug deep against an impressive Watford side, but there is little time to relax with Tuesday’s trip to Wolves looming large.

It is a chance to kick on in the race for the top four, after winning a remarkable 35 points since Solskjaer’s mid-December arrival, more than any other Premier League team has managed over the same period.

Asked what that tally says as to how close United are from challenging moving forwards, Jones said: “I don’t think we’re far away.

“Obviously we had a poor start to the season. It’s sort of like a story of two halves of the season, really.

“He’s come in and done a terrific job. I’m delighted he’s here now and we can move forward and progress under him.

“That’s the vision for the players, the staff, the fans, everyone involved in this football club (to win trophies).

“It’s a wonderful place to play football and that’s where we want to get back to.”

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