Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had reportedly resolved to dispense with Romelu Lukaku before the end of last season.
The Belgian, who fell out of contention under the Norwegian during the 2018-19 campaign, joined Inter Milan for a fee of £72m on deadline day.
Many have expressed anger at the club for failing to secure replacements for either Lukaku or Alexis Sanchez, who also moved to the San Siro on loan.
According to The Athletic‘s David Ornstein, Solskjaer had already decided to let Lukaku go in May and wanted a replacement ready by the start of pre-season.
Solskjær wanted Lukaku sold early on in pre-season so he could assess his attacking options and know the budget for a replacement. He even told associates at the League Managers’ Association dinner in May that Lukaku was leaving #mulive [the athletic]
— utdreport (@utdreport) October 11, 2019
United’s lack of options going forward is so blatant that only some monumental failure of organisation and planning could have been behind it.
Solskjaer would have obviously wanted a replacement, but the club could not locate a suitable one. One can only infer that something about the decision-making apparatus at the higher echelons at the club is fundamentally broken, or just not thinking in the right way at all.