Solskjaer pulls out of race for Villa manager

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has pulled out of the running to be the next Aston Villa manager.

The 39-year-old Molde coach had talks with Villa on Friday about succeeding Alex McLeish, who was sacked on 14 May.

But it emerged on Tuesday that the former Manchester United striker no longer wants to be considered.

Villa are sympathetic to Solskjaer’s reluctance to uproot his family and owner Randy Lerner will continue to consider other candidates.

Norwich manager Paul Lambert, Swansea’s Brendan Rodgers, Wigan boss Roberto Martinez, who turned the Villa job down last year, and Brighton manager Gus Poyet have all been linked with the vacancy.

Chief executive Paul Faulkner insisted last week that there is no time-frame for the appointment.

Faulkner also stated that Villa want their fourth manager in two years to restore “vibrancy” at Villa Park.

Former Manchester United reserve coach Solskjaer had been the strong favourite for the role after last week’s talks became public.

“I have said for a long time that I have ambitions to be a Premier League manager, but I haven’t been chasing after any jobs,” Solskjaer, who led Molde to their first league title last year, told the Norwegian press over the weekend.

“It’s up to Aston Villa now. I have only had a chat with them and expect them to speak to other candidates.”