London: Former Manchester United striker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has opened talks with Aston Villa about becoming the English Premier League club's new manager. He is believed to have been flown over in club owner Randy Lerner's own private plane to meet him in Birmingham on Friday.
The 39-year-old Norwegian, who has been managing Molde in his homeland since 2010, has been lined up to replace the fired Alex McLeish at Villa.
A statement on Molde's website said that the club "is aware of interest and contact from Aston Villa, and is aware that Aston Villa and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer are holding talks."
Solskjaer scored 128 goals in 367 matches for United, including one against Bayern Munich in United's 1999 Champions League final win. He retired in 2007 after failing to recover from a knee injury and was a coach of United's reserves before joining Molde.
Solskjaer then led his current club Molde to a historic double this season in his first full campaign in charge, including the first title win in the club's 100-year history, and should he leave to take over Villa, he will be giving up the opportunity to manage in the Champions League next season.
He has previously spoken of his desire to manage Manchester United one day, having left the a role as the club's reserve team boss to take up the position in Norway.
Two potential stumbling blocks to a deal being struck between the two parties is that Solskjaer is thought to be reluctant to leave Molde so early into his coaching career, and he is also not keen to unsettle his wife Silje and three children, having only just put down roots in Kristiansund.