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 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.
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.
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.