He is no different than the majority of the top coaches in this regard, aware of the competitive advantages that can be gained by siding with the element of surprise around any given game.
The Manchester United boss picked his side as usual on Sunday – as did Jurgen Klopp – and the rosters were revealed 60 minutes before kick-off only to have the game postponed shortly after.
The high-level clash between the Red Devils and Liverpool will be postponed at some point in the near future, but both coaches will be aware of who will be on the pitch unless injuries appear by then.
Solskjaer is unlikely to make any big changes, but he had a valuable opportunity to plan ahead for the upcoming fight even more than usual.
Klopp picked several of his favorite starters that day, but made key changes, such as the selection of Nat Phillips, who was previously known to be injured.
Ahead of the announcement of Phillips’ inclusion, Solskjaer would expect Fabinho to be part of Liverpool’s defensive line, with either Gini Wijnaldum or Thiago Alcantara as the team’s midfielder.
As for how it changes procedures, Phillips certainly has limits, but he’s strong in the air, winning 70 of his 98 Premier League aerial duels this season, leaving him with a success rate of around 71. , 4%.
Harry Maguire is the only United player to have a better win rate in the air this season, with Phillips’ presence ultimately meaning Liverpool are stronger when defending set pieces and when long passes are made in his direction to beat the press. .
On the other hand, Phillips is not as comfortable in possession as Fabinho, which means Solskjaer could play around with the idea of pressing higher than normal in order to force mistakes on him, which could suit Edinson Cavani’s skills.
Klopp also selected a midfield trio of James Milner, Fabinho and Thiago which would have resulted in a forward three rather than a forward four including Diogo Jota.
The usual trident of Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah has been chosen, with the movements of these well-known players from most of the division as the Brazilian drifts into deeper areas as his two wider teammates move towards inside.
The 4-2-3-1 could have been more unpredictable for United to deal with, but Klopp instead seemed to stick rather than twist using 4-3-3.
It remains to be seen whether Klopp will throw a wrench into the works to catch Solskjaer off guard, but if not, the Norwegian will have already picked up a number of aspects without a ball being kicked.
If the game is suspended for days rather than weeks, Solskjaer could enter the game with a few aces up his sleeve.