Paul Pogba says Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has put a "smile" back on his face after emerging from "the shadows" under Jose Mourinho to spearhead Manchester United's resurgence this season.
Pogba's praise for Solskjaer was echoed by team-mates Jesse Lingard and Ander Herrera in the wake of Sunday's 1-0 win over Tottenham at Wembley and The Telegraph understands there is growing momentum within the Old Trafford dressing room for the interim manager to be handed the job on a permanent basis at the end of the season.
United are determined to conduct a thorough recruitment process as they seek their fourth permanent manager in six years since Sir Alex Ferguson's retirement, with Spurs head coach Mauricio Pochettino still the club's first choice for the position.
As reported by The Telegraph over the weekend, England manager Gareth Southgate is an alternative option and Zinedine Zidane, formerly with Real Madrid, and Atletico Madrid's Diego Simeone have also been linked with the post.
Yet Solskjaer hopes to win over the United board between now and the end of the season and, after recording six successive wins, the Norwegian is already garnering significant support among the squad with his confidence boosting man-management and positive, attack-minded approach.
Pogba has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of that. The France midfielder's toxic relationship with Mourinho reached a nadir last month when the former United manager branded him "a virus" during a dressing-room tirade at Southampton and then relegated the club's record £89 million signing to the bench for his final three league games in charge.
But Pogba has been reinvigorated by Solskjaer, scoring four goals and claiming four assists, including the sumptuous pass from which Marcus Rashford scored the goal that sunk Spurs, and was eager to highlight the impact the caretaker manager has had.
"No, of course [I'm happier]," Pogba said. "Before the coach [Solskjaer] came back, I was in the shadows, benched, and a football player on the bench - I'm not sure if he can accept that. Now I'm taking pleasure playing again. I'm doing what I love so it's normal. And we're winning so indeed I am always smiling.
"It's a pleasure to be reunited with him [Solskjaer] again. I knew him from the academy and the reserves, when we called him 'Super Sub'. He is doing a really good job. He's been a player, he knows the mentality of this club. He has come back to help us and boost us and he's doing a great job, although the season's still long and it's not over so let's see how it goes.
"I am playing a bit further forward and I have got more security behind me. It gives me the freedom to go forwards, to try to get into the box and support the strikers."
Lingard cited Rashford's smart finish from a tight angle as an example of the impact Solskjaer's coaching is already having on the pitch after extensive work on the England striker's finishing during last week's training camp in Dubai.
"Throughout the training session in Dubai he [Rashford] has been practicing his finishing with the manager. It's prepared him for big games and moments like that," the England forward said.
Lingard also believes Solskjaer underlined his tactical nous against Spurs by playing him centrally and asking Rashford and Anthony Martial to cut inside from out wide and run the channels.
"We'd been practicing all week in Dubai with the formation," Lingard said. "Tactically it was great in the first half. It wasn't a holiday over there, it was all work.
"We're very organised. We want to attack, we want to make those runs forward. The midfielders are running forward and we're putting other teams under pressure. It's working and we need to carry it on."
Herrera said Solskjaer had restored confidence, particularly among the attackers. "What is happening now is that all the players have a lot of confidence," the midfielder said. "I think the manager knows what it means to play for Manchester United and has transmitted that to all the players and especially to the forwards, who are magnificent and have amazing talent.
"We believe blindly in what the manager and his assistants are transmitting to us."
United's victory over Spurs still owed much to the brilliance of David De Gea and underlined the importance of tying the Spain goalkeeper to a new long-term deal. The Spain goalkeeper is out of contract at the end of next season and is understood to want an increase of around £135,000 a week on his existing £240,000-a-week wages to stay. "We want him to stay," Lingard said. "Some of his saves, you're like, 'Oh my god'."
Herrera added: "It seemed that we had a wall in our goal and it was impossible to beat it. But I think we also have to give importance and merit to what we have done [as a team]. We have created chances, we have come out to attack a rival and we have gone out to win in a very difficult stadium. That combination of the ambition we have, the great players we have and the best goalkeeper in the world gives you this kind of victory."