Sunday 25 February 2018

Manchester United set to appoint Ryan Giggs as their next manager - report

Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal and assistant manager Ryan Giggs
Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal and assistant manager Ryan Giggs
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Manchester United are preparing to appoint Ryan Giggs as Louis van Gaal’s successor, according to a report in Spanish newspaper Marca.

Van Gaal’s position as United manager has under a cloud for most of this season, with former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho widely reported to be the leading contender to succeed the Dutchman this summer.

Current United assistant manager Giggs has long been hailed as a United manager in the making, but it seemed as if he would have to wait a little longer for the top job as Mourinho emerged as a leading contender to succeed Van Gaal.

Yet the mood appears to have turned against United hiring Mourinho in recent weeks, with former United manager and influential director Alex Ferguson among going public in backing Van Gaal and stressing the significance of his desire to promote the club’s youthful talent.

Mourinho’s failure to embrace academy stars in his previous jobs at Chelsea, Inter Milan and Real Madrid is being promoted by his detractors as a reason why he would not be the right fit for United.

Now Marca’s report suggesting Van Gaal’s assistant and club legend Giggs will inherit the Old Trafford hot-seat also comes with this suggestion, which appears to have come from a United source.

“With the Premier League giants currently sitting fifth in the table, reports have been rampant that the Portuguese tactician would replace Louis van Gaal during the summer," reads their story.

“However United management, should they sack the Dutchman, are keen to replace him with a figure that won't overshadow the club, something that would take place should the Special One be brought to Old Trafford.

“As a result the Glazer family have already taken steps towards promoting Giggs from his current post as assistant manager, leaving Mourinho’s future in doubt.”

United legend and senior director Bobby Chartlon has also been mentioned as an opponent to Mourinho’s potential appointment at United, while club ambassadors Bryan Robson and Dwight Yorke have spoken out in recent weeks in support of Giggs becoming manager after Van Gaal.

The appointment of Giggs may not be welcomed by a majority of United supporters who appear to have embraced the idea of Mourinho becoming the club’s manager in recent months, with the promise of trophy success that he brings glossing over the negative elements of his explosive temperament.

Yet there has long been concern that Mourinho is not the right man to lead United, with director Charlton among those believed to have ensured he did not succeed Ferguson when he stepped down as manager back in 2013.

Now there is speculation in Spain suggesting Real Madrid President Florentino Perez will step up his bid to bring Mourinho back to the Bernabeu for a second spell as manager next season, with Paris Saint-Germain also keen to hire the Portuguese tactician as they look to replace Laurent Blanc.

Mourinho has made it clear that his preference is to remain in England’s Premier League next season, but that may not be possible if he fails in his bid to become Manchester United manager.

It is increasingly evident is that senior figures at Old Trafford are determined to block attempts to install Mourinho as the club’s manager, with this story set to rumble on for a few more weeks yet.

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