Having selected David Moyes as the man to succeed him at Manchester United, Sir Alex Ferguson is reported to have been in agreement that Moyes had to go after the club sacked their manager on Tuesday morning.
Ferguson’s selection of Moyes as the man to continue his work at Old Trafford couldn’t have been made any clearer this time last year, especially when Ferguson delivered a passionate speech to the United supporters instructing them to back the new man regardless of how difficult things may become. Less than 10 months into his reign, Moyes was ruthlessly sacked.
And reported in the Daily Mail, Ferguson is believed to have been one of the directors that attended a meeting on Sunday in a Manchester hotel to decide Moyes’ fate, where it was agreed that the 50-year-old had to go.
Having arrived at the club’s Carrington training base at 5am Tuesday morning following a day of speculation that he would be sacked imminently, Moyes met with vice-chairman Ed Woodward at 7.40am, where he was informed face-to-face that he was being dismissed.
The next Manchester United manager: Those linked with the Old Trafford hot seat
The next Manchester United manager: Those linked with the Old Trafford hot seat
1/10 Jurgen Klopp
Currently the manager of Borussia Dortmund, Klopp coached his team to the Champions League final in 2013. He also delivered back-to-back Bundesliga titles in 2010/11 and 2011/12, despite Dortmund being in the financial shadow of Bayern Munich. All of that was achieved while playing a distinctive attractive style of football. After six years at the club, it could be time for the 46-year-old German to move on, however he has already said he is happy to stay.
2/10 Fabio Capello
The former England manager has coached the likes of Real Madrid, AC Milan, Juventus and Roma. He now resides over the Russian national team who topped their group in qualification for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil to ensure they are at the biggest tournament of them all for the first time since 2002.
3/10 Louis van Gaal
Dutchman Van Gaal will be leading his national side at this year's World Cup in Brazil. He has taken charge of both Barcelona and Bayern Munich in the past and won the Champions League in 1995 with Ajax. In total, he has won over 60 per cent of his 780 games in management and he's made it very clear he covets a position in the Premier League. Heavily linked with Tottenham prior to David Moyes' sacking.
4/10 Sir Alex Ferguson
Considering he's at every game anyway, a switch from the stands back to the dug-out doesn't seem inconceivable for Sir Alex Ferguson. It'd certainly be a popular choice among fans having achieved so much success in his long time in charge. The winner of 13 Premier League titles, five FA Cups and two Champions League titles, if there's anyone who can succeed Ferguson, it's Ferguson.
5/10 Frank De Boer
Although his managerial experience is relatively small in comparison to other potentials, he has already shown he can win domestically. Since taking over at Ajax in 2010, in his first job as manager, De Boer has won the Eredivisie in three consecutive attempts, with his team currently well clear at the top of the league this season. Has been regularly linked with the biggest vacancies in Europe.
6/10 Antonio Conte
Winner of the Serie A manager of the year in 2011-12 and 2012-13 after leading Juventus to the title in those seasons, as well as a Champions League winners medal to his name as a player, Conte has pedigree. Since taking charge in Turin three years ago, the Italian has returned Juventus to the dominant force in Italy, with the club destined to win their third title in a row this term. That kind of dominance is exactly what United crave.
7/10 Diego Simeone
Simeone has been enjoying much success since taking over at Atletico Madrid. His excellent win rate has seen the club win the Europa League and Super Cup, and against all odds challenge Real Madrid and Barcelona for La Liga title this season. He'd have to hope his history with David Beckham didn't count against him if Manchester United came calling.
8/10 Michael Laudrup
Despite a rather sudden and messy divorce from Swansea City earlier this year, Laudrup did show he was capable of managing at the highest level. He won the League Cup with the Welsh club, the first major trophy in the club's history, and he did it with a brand of football that won many plaudits. A legend as a player, the Dane has the gravitas for such a huge position as Manchester United manager.
9/10 Harry Redknapp
Currently manager of QPR, Redknapp has often been a fan favourite across English football, winning manager of the year in 2009/10 as well as the FA Cup with Portsmouth in 2008. At one stage he looked a certainty to be the next England manager, only to lose out to Roy Hodgson.
10/10 Ex-United players
If Manchester United were to choose from one of their own, they would have plenty of ex-players to pick from. Ryan Giggs is the most obvious choice after being installed on a temporary basis after Moyes' departure. Others in management who served as a player under Sir Alex Ferguson include Roy Keane, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, both Neville brothers and Steve Bruce. Mark Hughes played for United along with Gordon Strachan and Laurent Blanc. While none of them have particularly overachieved in any of their positions, a former player tends to be popular with fans, and can be rewarded with success.
The club then released the news via a club statement on their Twitter account, which read “David Moyes has left the club. The club would like to place on record its thanks for the hard work, honesty and integrity he brought to the role”, and led to criticism from many at the way the sacking of Moyes has been handled – the strongest criticism coming from the Manchester United Supporters Trust.
It is believed that doubts began to creep into Ferguson’s mind over Moyes’ suitability as early as two months ago – when the decision was made by the club’s owners to dispense with their manager following the 2-0 Champions League defeat to Olympiakos.
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Ferguson, along with Woodward, former chief executive David Gill and United great Sir Bobby Charlton, decided that Moyes could not be trusted with the £100m-plus that United will make available to strengthen the squad in the summer, and it is hoped that an experienced manager with a proven track record will help lure the best players available to the club even though they can’t offer Champions League football this season.
Legendary midfielder Ryan Giggs has assumed the first-team responsibilities on an interim basis until a permanent appointment can be made, with Dutchman Louis van Gaal and Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti United’s preferred targets.
Van Gaal is the current favourite to assume the role permanently once his commitments with the Netherlands national team have come to an end, even though he had appeared close to replacing Tim Sherwood at Tottenham in the summer should they sack the English manager as is expected at the end of the season.
But it is thought that Ancelotti, who is currently challenging for a La Liga, Champions League and Copa del Rey treble with Real, could leave at the end of the season should you crash out of Europe in the semi-final clash with Bayern Munich – the first leg of which takes place in the Spanish capital tonight. His experience and proven success, as well as winning a Premier League title with Chelsea in 2009-10, stands him out as a leading candidate should he become available.
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While United have denied making any approaches, a leading Dutch newspaper claims that officials from united met with Van Gaal up to 11 or 12 days ago, with the United hierarchy desperate to steal in on Spurs’ move for the 62-year-old when they heard that a deal to take him to White Hart Lane was close.
With Jurgen Klopp, Pep Guardiola and Laurent Blanc already ruling themselves out of the running for the job, it seems the next United manager will be selected from either Van Gaal or Ancelotti, although Diego Simeone is considered a back-up option should the club need one. And while Ryan Giggs is not being considered for the job, he is widely considered as a United manager for the future, with the door set to be left open for him even if he leaves the club in the summer.
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