CARDIFF boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer admits he always regarded returning to Manchester United as a manager as an "unrealistic dream".
But the former United striker will be back at Old Trafford tonight, in charge of the side using the opposing dugout, looking to win points for the Bluebirds' relegation fight.
The Norwegian has been handed a quick return to his former stomping ground after Cardiff identified him as the man to pull them away from the Premier League drop zone earlier this month. He is certain to receive a good reception, with his playing days at the club from 1996-2007, under Alex Ferguson, fresh in the memory.
It is a situation he has previously imagined, but without thinking it might really occur before he began his managerial career with Molde.
The 40-year-old said: "It has not been an ambition but it has been sort of an unrealistic dream. You never know one day you might end up there.
"The former manager just always installed into us 'dream big', and maybe unrealistic, because you never know it might happen. For me to play at Man United was never in my wildest dreams. So now I'm there as a manager. It just comes by coincidence. You just end up there."
Solskjaer was speaking at press conference in a hotel in Manchester city centre, having remained in the north west with his side since Saturday's FA Cup win at Bolton.
The Bluebirds boss confirmed that the signings of Fabio from United and Kenwyne Jones from Stoke.
Solskjaer expected the pair to join his squad in the north west ahead of tonight's clash, although it is not thought they will be eligible to play.
There has been no confirmation yet of whether forward Peter Odemwingie will be joining Stoke in return, as expected.
Solskjaer, appointed on January 2, has already signed three players this month in Magnus Wolff Eikrem, Mats Moller Daehli and Jo Inge Berget.
Another player from United, winger Wilfried Zaha, is likely to join them on loan for the rest of the season. Solskjaer said: "Everything is not complete so we cannot confirm that."