Manchester United have a stack of penalty tackers in the squad and with the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has a problem he didn’t expect going into the new season.
The penalty taker seems to change at United more often than Solskjaer would’ve expected but that is down to the sheer quality in players that he has signed in this rebuilding project he promised since his arrival.
When the manager arrived at the club in 2018, Paul Pogba was the regular penalty taker and ended up scoring eight of his 11 penalties.
However, during the following season, Pogba spent a chunk of the time on the injury table and Marcus Rashford took over the penalty duty in sensational fashion.
Scoring seven out of nine of his penalty goals in the 2019/20 season, it looked like penalties were in safe hands up until the arrival of Bruno Fernandes.
From January of that season, the Portuguese midfielder took over penalty duty and stunned the fans as well as the whole country as he very rarely missed from the spot.
Since then, Bruno has scored 21 of his penalty kicks and missing one vs. Newcastle when Karl Darlow made a magnificent save to end his spell from the spot.
The arrival of Ronaldo means that the penalty taker at United is under doubt as the club now have the two best penalty takers in Europe in recent years.
Throughout his entire career, the 35-year-old has scored 139 penalties and missed only 28.
Goal quotes the United boss, who explained in a recent press conference how he is going to deal with the situation.
“I knew that question was going to come and of course I’ve had a chat with the two of them,” Solskjaer said. “We’ve got two players there that I’d trust with my life to put a penalty away and that’s a great position to be in.
“They’ll know via the conversations we’ve had and the conversations we’ll have before the games how we’re going to solve this. It’s going to be my decision what’ll happen. The two of them will keep on doing what they do when they’re asked to take the penalties.”
Solskjaer was also asked whether or not the players will be sharing the penalty duty this season considering the depth in talented takers.
“I’ve got Cristiano, Bruno, Marcus [Rashford], I’ve got players I trust to score every time they step up to take a penalty.”
This is a good position for Solskjaer to be in, especially with the number of penalties United usually achieve in a season.