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Comment: Ryan Giggs threatens to tear Louis van Gaal apart if he remains at Manchester United

The Welshman could be a destabilising presence if he remains in a prominent position
  • @simonrice

A disappointing start to the season, perhaps an unexpected defeat at Old Trafford, and quite quickly the pressure builds on the new Manchester United manager.

Looming in the background is a club legend, arguably the greatest ever, ramping up that pressure just a little more.

This was the experience of David Moyes during his torturous tenure but Manchester United might be about to make the same exact mistakes if Ryan Giggs remains in a prominent position at the club after the arrival of Louis van Gaal.

Just as Moyes must have found with the ever-present Sir Alex Ferguson gazing down from the stands, following in the footsteps of a legend is all the harder if they're still their, presumably judging each and every change their successor felt necessary since they vacated the Chevrolet sponsored hotseat.

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Giggs may have been in charge for just four games rather than the 26 years of Ferguson - but it was enough for many (including Sir Alex himself) to suggest he should be given the job on a full-time basis. That he has more medals than could be safely trailed behind a light aircraft certainly adds merit to his claim.

Louis van Gaal at a press conference with the Netherlands squad


So when Van Gaal takes over after the World Cup, as he is fully expected to do, surely the presence of Giggs in a prominent coaching role threatens to be an unstabling one.

Should the club go through a difficult spell inevitably attention from outside the club will almost immediately turn to the man sitting beside him, asking if he could do a better job. That pressure is unlikely to make Van Gaal do his job any better. Andy will the United players, who have so much respect for Giggs, not be more inclined to listen to the man who has been an ever-present during their time at the club or the new manager who's going through a difficult phase?


Moyes was the one who opted to promote Giggs to a more senior role at the club, but as the Scotsman's reign unravelled reports that Giggs was among the most vocal expressing his displeasure weren't far away. It's a favourite chant of the Old Trafford crowd, but Moyes might do his permanent successor a favour with a verse of "Giggs will tear you apart, again."