Nicky Butt, one of the “Class of ’92” generation brought in to oversee Manchester United following the sacking of David Moyes on Tuesday, said it would be a “proud moment” for him, Paul Scholes and Phil Neville as they assist the interim manager, Ryan Giggs, on Saturday at Old Trafford against Norwich City.
Butt, who has been managing the Under-21s side at the club, will be on the coaches’ bench along with Scholes and Phil Neville, who have taken training since Tuesday. Giggs will hold his first press conference this morning in the Carrington academy building where Sir Alex Ferguson held his Friday briefings in the latter years of his reign.
It will be the first time that Giggs will be asked to address his own relationship with Moyes, although the expectation is that – in the Ferguson tradition – he will not be particularly disposed to disclosing a great deal.
There are understood to be continuing negotiations between the club and Moyes and his representatives, including the League Managers’ Association chief executive Richard Bevan, over the terms of his compensation package. Meanwhile, the search for a new manager begins in earnest this week.
Butt told the club’s in-house television station MUTV that it would be “massive for us, a proud moment for us all”. He said: “To be there together is a bit of a surreal thing. We walked in here together when we were 12 and to be here now – I’m not 40 yet but Giggsy is, and myself and Scholes are nearly there too. So for us and Phil to be there together is a very proud moment.
“We’re here to try to help the club and get the results that we want from now until the end of the season. What happens after that, who knows?
“We’ve got some amazing players at this club, good lads who care about the club, who are really positive about United and want the best for the club. [Saturday] is a massive occasion, not only for Ryan, but for the staff, the fans and the players as well because they know that we’ve underachieved as a club this year.
“The players in that changing room know how good they are. They look round, look left and look right at the players next to them and know that they are very proud, hard-working lads. I’m sure we’ll see that [against Norwich].”
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 Everton manager, Roberto Martinez, wished Moyes, his predecessor at Goodison Park, the best of luck in securing a new job.
Defeat to Everton last Sunday was the final straw for the Old Trafford board, but despite the fall-out seemingly tarnishing Moyes’ reputation, Martinez is confident he will not be damaged in the long term.
“It is not a nice situation when a manager loses his job, especially someone who has such strong links with our club,” said the Spaniard. “It has been a difficult experience but any experience is a good experience in this game unfortunately.
“We know David Moyes will look forward to the next footballing chapter. We know he is a very successful man and has a real strong winning mentality and he will get ready to bounce back straight away.”
Martinez added: “It is very difficult to get that experience. The amount of years he has been working at the highest level, and the know-how he has is a real strength.
“I am sure he will be ready to get into another job as quick as he can and I am sure he won’t have a lack of offers or opportunities when you have someone who is so hard- working, focused and dedicated in his job.
“We all know he is going to be very successful in the future. We wish him the best of luck and he will always be well thought of and we will always be thankful of the job he did at our football club.”
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