Manchester United news LIVE: Ernesto Valverde targeted for interim role with Mauricio Pochettino favourite

Manchester United won their first match of the post-Ole Gunnar Solskjaer era on Tuesday night as Cristiano Ronaldo and Jadon Sancho scored in a 2-0 victory at Villarreal.

Michael Carrick made a few tweaks to the starting line-up but saw his side frustrated for the first hour, with David de Gea making a vital save. However, the introduction of Bruno Fernandes and Marcus Rashford from the bench sparked United into life and the victory ensured they will advance to the knockout stages.

Meanwhile, in the background, United’s manager search rumbles on. Mauricio Pochettino is reported to be at the head of that queue though, with The Independent learning that the former Tottenham and Southampton boss is keen to take over at Old Trafford – and could even do so mid-season.

If it can’t happen until summer and United follow the interim boss route until then as they announced, Ernesto Valverde is one of the leading candidates for the post.

Follow all the latest updates and reaction from El Madrigal, plus United’s search for both an interim boss and a long-term solution:

Michael Carrick: 'Manchester United win is for Ole’

“It’s not been an easy couple of days for anyone at the club and that result almost feels like it’s for Ole,” Carrick said after 2-0 win.

“We had a job to do and things needed to be taken care of. I was happy to do it and thankfully it all went to plan.

“When you’ve suffered results-wise and aren’t in good form, individually and as a team, it’s not easy to come out and let everything click. We had to show some character and fight.”

Sir Alex Ferguson not involved in search for new manager

Sir Alex Ferguson will not be involved in Manchester United’s pursuit of a successor to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, according to ESPN.

That responsibility will lie with football director John Murtough and technical director Darren Fletcher.

That is despite Sir Alex, 79, still acting as a director on United’s football board.

Jadon Sancho should be Manchester United cornerstone in new era

Even before his first goal for his new club finally arrived in the last of the 90 minutes which made up his 15th appearance, he had already put in the most eye-catching performance of any player on the pitch.

This was not only a fresh start for Manchester United on a collective level under the guidance of caretaker manager Michael Carrick but it was also a new beginning for Jadon Sancho on an individual level too.

The goal in question, similarly, was not only a well-constructed counter attack by a collective but finished brilliantly by the individual on the end of it. Like with Cristiano Ronaldo’s crucial breakthrough shortly before, it came from Fred winning the ball, only this time he was inside his own half rather than deep in Villarreal territory and there was plenty of ground still to cover.

Jadon Sancho shows why he should be cornerstone of Man United’s post-Solskjaer era

The England winger was superb at El Madrigal to show why he can be a key piece in a new era at Old Trafford

Next Manchester United manager: Pochettino insists he is ‘so happy’ at PSG

Mauricio Pochettino insisted he was “happy” at Paris Saint-Germain on Tuesday amid reports that he is Manchester United’s first choice to succeed Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Pochettino, whose PSG squad face Manchester City on Wednesday, is understood to be interested in joining United, possibly even before the summer, but said the speculation was part of football and that he remains happy in Paris.

Reports on Tuesday linked former Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde with the interim role at United, while caretaker Michael Carrick prepared for his first game in charge against Villarreal.

Mauricio Pochettino insists he’s ‘happy’ at PSG amid Manchester United interest

The Argentine is understood to be interested in returning to the Premier League

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