End of the road for Giggs at United
Ryan Giggs is understood to be close to ending his 29 year association with Manchester United having rejected the chance to remain on the backroom staff in a demoted position.
Jose Mourinho was keen to retain the services of United's record appearance holder but Giggs has decided the time is right to depart the club he joined as a 14 year old schoolboy. After meeting with club bosses following the sacking of Louis van Gaal, the 42 year old Welshman went on holiday to Dubai to consider his future and it is thought that he will now advise United of his decision to leave.
Following the departure Sir Alex Ferguson in 2013, Giggs was groomed as a long-term successor and held key roles on the coaching staff in both the David Moyes and Louis van Gaal managerial regimes. Having overlooked Mourinho as an immediate replacement for Sir Alex due to concerns about playing style and his unwillingness to blood young players, yet another season outside the Champions League has now seen the United board change tact and drop their idealistic view of promoting from within. How the tables have turned. The club with a proud tradition of nurturing their own talent now seem intent on a quick fix and have decided to recruit the managerial equivalent of a galactico in Mourinho. Meanwhile Real Madrid, often criticised for their relentless pursuit of the world's top footballing talent, promoted from their own ranks when moving club legend Zinedine Zidane to the Head Coach role earlier in the season. Less than a week ago, he saw his team win the Champions League.
Having chosen to depart the familiar surroundings of Old Trafford, where does Giggs go from here as he seeks to forge his own path in management? With his pedigree in the game Giggs will have plenty of suitors interested in tapping into his experience at one of the world's biggest clubs. Linked last season with the Swansea job, Giggs will hope to pursue his managerial ambitions in the top flight and he could yet be an outsider for the vacant Everton job. Having witnessed his former team mate Gary Neville, highly acclaimed for his tactical nous in the Sky studio, struggle to translate this into success during his brief spell at Valencia, Giggs will be aware of the challenge ahead. Put simply, failure to succeed away from Old Trafford will extinguish any prospect of a return to the club in the top job. Further case studies to examine are those of Steve Bruce and Mark Hughes, both former United players who have forged successful managerial careers with less fashionable clubs and more modest resources. Yet on both occasions when the United vacancy has arisen in recent years, neither has been touted for the role, demonstrating how difficult it is to prove your success away from a big club.
It may be the end of the Ryan Giggs and Manchester United love affair. Only time will tell how long for.