DAVID Moyes will face the media for the first time as Manchester United manager today with his status reinforced by the addition of two very familiar faces to his coaching team.
While it had been widely anticipated Phil Neville would return to Old Trafford to begin his club coaching career under the guidance of a man he has worked so closely with at Everton since 2005, confirmation Ryan Giggs will be combining his responsibilities as a player with a position on Moyes’ backroom team was a surprise. Having signed a new contract in March, the 39-year-old seemed completely focused on adding even more silverware to his impressive collection.
However, with Mike Phelan, Rene Meulensteen and Eric Steele all leaving in the wake of Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement, Moyes has moved to silence any doubts over the inside knowledge about United’s inner workings within his coaching team. Between Giggs and Neville, Moyes has ushered 1,327 club appearances into the fold. The pair could lay out a combined collection of 19 Premier League winners’ medals, seven FA Cup and three Champions Leagues.
“Ryan’s success and ability to adapt his game over a number of years gives him an unrivalled perspective on the modern game,” said Moyes. “His career is an example to any aspiring young player.”
The practicalities of Giggs’ role have not been outlined, although evidently the veteran Welshman, the only man to have scored in all 21 seasons of the Premier League’s history, will be expected to make a significant contribution on the field.
However, with Neville also coming on board, in addition to Nicky Butt, who has remained on the coaching staff after being hired by Ferguson last season, there are now three key members of that famed ‘class of 92’ working behind the scenes.
“I gave my all when I played for Everton but it is no secret that this club is in my heart,” said Neville. “When David called to give me this opportunity, I couldn’t resist.
“I’ve really enjoyed working with David and his staff as a player and I think that, together with Ryan, we can make a real contribution to Manchester United.”
While Neville does have some coaching experience, and was part of Stuart Pearce’s set-up at this summer’s European Under-21 Championships, Giggs is still to take his first steps despite amassing further qualifications in Turkey last month. “It’s no secret that I have been taking my qualifications and I see this as the first step in my future career,” he said. “I’m really looking forward to working alongside David and the team and hope I will be able to bring my experience to bear, having been both a player and part of the Manchester United family for so long.”
The appointment provides a positive backdrop to Moyes’ first public appearance as United boss at a press conference today, when he will be accompanied by skipper Nemanja Vidic.
A potential replacement for Vidic, Benfica’s Ezequiel Garay, has been touted as Moyes’ first significant signing.
However, of more interest are moves for Leighton Baines and Barcelona midfielder Thiago Alcantara, who is believed to have agreed a deal to join United in principle but has so far failed to complete his move from the Nou Camp as he negotiates the details of his contract.
Gill leads tributes to United stalwart Crompton
Former Manchester United chief executive David Gill has paid tribute to former goalkeeper and coach Jack Crompton, who has died aged 91.
Crompton made 212 appearances for the Old Trafford club and was part of the team that won the 1948 FA Cup and league title in 1952.
After ending his playing
career, Crompton took up a coaching role under the guidance of Sir Matt Busby and was part of the Scot’s backroom team for the 1968 European Cup final
triumph against Benfica at Wembley before eventually
becoming reserve team manager. “I have known Jack for many years and was always struck by his humility,” said Gill, who stepped down from his role at United to commit his time to European governing body Uefa, where he is now an executive committee member.
“As a man that achieved so much in the game, he always sought to put much more back. His tireless work for the Manchester County FA will be hard to replace and he was great company at reserve matches, which he attended with such regularity, even in the poor health that he had to suffer in the last few years. His kindness and good
humour distinguished him and the club and football in general will miss him greatly.”