Van Gaal to have Giggs as assistant – reports

For a few weeks now we have been waiting for the announcement of Louis van Gaal as the new Manchester United manager. Earlier this week the press suggested that an announcement was imminent after it was suggested the club were waiting for the end of the season to announce the permanent successor of interim manager Ryan Giggs, who replaced the sacked David Moyes at the end of April. I have been looking into Van Gaal to see what he would do regarding back room staff and to see what he has done before and I found myself reading a quote which talks about what the Dutch manager did when he took over from Jupp Heynckes at Bayern Munich on the 1st July 2009. Van Gaal, as quoted by the Daily Star, said:

“When I go to a new club, I always want to keep one coach from the existing staff and that person at Bayern was Herman Kerland, who is still working under Pep Guardiola.

“I wanted to know who was coming through the youth system – and he is the man who said to me ‘(Thomas) Müller, Badstuber and Alaba. These are the players.’

“So I let them train with the first team, I observed them – and then I decided where they were going to play.”

So as I see it, Van Gaal likes to keep one coach or even a staff member from the previous manager, but would also bring in his own coaches, just like any other manager would do. He retained the services of Herman Kerland, who is still part of the staff ay Bayern working under Pep Guardiola. This sounds like a wise move, as if you imagine a new manager coming into a new club, the manager and his assistants would need to watch all players in the first team and the various youth teams, just to see which ones are performing and which ones are not.


Having a member of staff who has been at the club for a period of time effectively means that the new manager and his staff just work with the current staff member and decide who is give their chance in the first team and who is given more time to prove themselves, whether on loan or with the various youth teams the club have to offer.

The point I am getting at here is that there is one man that should remain as part of the new managers coaching staff, that man is Ryan Giggs. Granted it would have been a gamble to give him the vacant managers position. He has done well during the four matches he has been in charge, but there was no pressure on the squad at the time as they had effectively missed out on everything but UEFA Europa League qualification, but the defeat at home to Sunderland all but ended that, with United missing out in an European competition next season. If Giggs started in the role as manager next season, the pressure will be on him and I would hate to see the supporters turn on Giggs like they did with Moyes if results did not go as well as expected.

Today Ryan Giggs and Ed Woodward flew to the Netherlands, although only Giggs was pictured outside the Hotel Oranje in Noordwijk, with the Dutch squad on a rest day from their FIFA World Cup preparations, it would seem that Giggs and Van Gaal could have met today with a view to the pair holding talks as to what his future could be at the club he has spent the last 27 years of his career, with him being involved in the first team for the past 23 years of his career, making 963 appearances and scoring 168 goals, which may be something we never see repeated.

Giggs has United’s blood running through his veins and knows what is going on at the various youth levels and which players are ready to make the step up to the first team. With United looking at a squad rebuild, I do feel that players should be given a chance to make that step up, but the club also need quality players who are able to step in and have United competing with their rivals once again, especially after a season where the clubs demise has come as a shock to many of the supporters who have only seen success under Sir Alex Ferguson.

By Paul Bienkowski

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