Manchester United chief executive discusses Alex Ferguson successor

 

Manchester United chief executive David Gill has underlined the requirement for Sir Alex Ferguson's replacement to be completely in tune with the values so prevalent at Old Trafford.

Ferguson celebrated 25 years in the United hotseat on Sunday.

It is a quite incredible achievement that drew widespread appreciation from across the game.

As Ferguson has shown no inclination to surrender his position, the search for a successor has yet to begin.

However, when it does, Gill has highlighted some non-negotiable requirements the new man must meet.

"It will be difficult to replace him - it's naive to say anything other than that," Gill told MUTV.

"But we are a great club whose values go back in history to our heritage to the '50s and '60s and the last 25 years with Alex.

"To continue with that, the new manager needs to understand those values and the vision for the club and must buy into that."

As he approaches his 70th birthday on New Year's Eve, no-one could accuse Ferguson of concentrating on his immediate priority of withstanding the challenge posed by Manchester City at the expense of United's future.

In Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Danny Welbeck and Tom Cleverley, Ferguson has integrated a quartet of young English players to his squad this season that could provide a platform for United over the next decade.

"The important point to make is the new manager, whenever that may be and whomever that may be, will be taking over a great, great club, in a great, great sport and Alex, in particular, will want to make sure he inherits a great squad," said Gill.

"That's our goal - to make sure when the new manager comes in he does have a great squad to work with in terms of age and profile."

The chances of Ferguson's replacement emulating the Scot's success - 12 Premier League titles and two European Cups - is remote, though.

And Gill feels Ferguson's work goes far beyond that.

"Alex's legacy to United is to my mind very clear - delivering an unprecedented period of success in the Manchester United way," he said.

"By that, I mean attractive football using young players - both homegrown and buying players when necessary like Cristiano Ronaldo and Wayne Rooney, but actually developing our own players.

"That record is there for everyone to see and that legacy is very clear also.

"Within that, he's made sure he's cemented United's position as one of the top clubs in world football.

"We're very well respected clearly in this country and around the world. You only have to see our following there on tour in America and Asia, plus in Europe when you speak to any other club.

"United are rightly held in very high esteem down in no small measure to what Alex has achieved in the last 25 years."

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project