Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer poses for the media at Old Trafford after he was made permanent manager as a reward for leading the team to 14 wins in 19 games in his impressive interim spell. Photo:Rui Vieira/AP Photo

LONDON  Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said on Thursday that "the hard work starts now" after signing a three-year deal as the permanent manager of Manchester United.

The Norwegian, a United hero as a player, having scored the winner in the 1999 Champions League final, made the official step up from caretaker manager, having won 14 of his 19 games in charge so far.

Solksjaer said winning the Premier League again was the ultimate goal, but admitted it will not be easy.

"To lift the Premier League trophy again is what we expect, what we're used to, what we have done so many times," he told a news conference.

"We can't wait too many years, but it's not going to happen overnight."

Solsjkaer was the obvious choice after winning his first eight games in charge, having replaced Jose Mourinho, who was sacked in December.

The 46-year-old said he was honoured to be given the job full time.

"It's the start of something new," he said. "Now the hard work starts, so it's not a moment to be proud in that respect."

"This has been my ultimate dream, maybe a naive dream, but I've always had that dream in my mind. It's a huge, fantastic family of a football club and I'm so honoured to be given the responsibility."

Since Solskjaer's arrival, United have battled back into contention for a top-four spot, while they are also through to the quarter-finals of the Champions League.

"We are looking forward, we have got to work harder," he said. "I have got some targets, I want a Man United team to be one of the hardest working, fittest teams and that will bring results."

"I know we will be successful, but it's about taking it step by step."

And Solskjaer said he would continue to be himself, doing his job in a positive manner.

"It's about putting a smile on people's faces, whether you do that by winning games, or you go and speak to them," he said.

"It's creating an environment everyone wants to be in, giving everyone in the club a responsibility. We were lucky that we were good and won the first few games, which helped."

"I'm just going to be myself as I've always been. I know the trade, of course. I want us to lift trophies, but I can't wait to get to the challenge of improving the squad."

Solskjaer said new faces would inevitably come to the club in the summer but said he felt his existing squad could achieve big things.

""We have worked with them for three months and the improvement is there to be seen," he said. "We know there is so much more to come from them.

"Every day in training, the attitude has been fantastic but we know we've a long way to go. It's gong to be a mountain to climb, but we've climbed a few mountains before."

Reuters