Manchester United have officially confirmed the sacking of manager David Moyes after just 11 months in charge at Old Trafford.
The 50-year-old Scot who took the reigns from Sir Alex Ferguson who retired after 26 years in charge will now be replaced by club veteran Ryan Giggs temporarily until the end of the season but would the fans like to see the Welshman stay?
Giggs, 40, is ten years Moyes’ junior and has no managerial experience but the club would be hard pushed to find a professional in the game with better credentials than the midfield man. Giggs has made almost 1000 appearances for Manchester United since making his debut under Ferguson at the tender age of 17 back in 1990.
Since then Giggs has won no less than 13 Premier League titles, four FA Cup titles, four League Cup titles, two Champions League titles, the UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup with the Red Devils. He arrived to join the youth academy at age 12 and has been on the books at the club for an astonishing 29 years.
Individually, he is a complete professional and undoubtedly one of the most gifted and technically superior players on the planet; he won two PFA Young Player of the Year awards, was included in the PFA Team of the Century, won the PFA Players’ Player of the Year award, the FWA Tribute Award, BBC Sports Personality of the Year award, the Golden Foot, was indicted into the English Football Hall of Fame and won an OBE for service to football.
The fact remains that Ryan Giggs has little or no coaching experience. He has not actually ever been designated Manchester United captain but it is evident as a senior player, he possesses the required leadership skills on the pitch and in the dressing room but can he transfer that to his work on the training ground as a coach and on the touchline as a manager?
His former colleague at Old Trafford Dwight Yorke has stated he believes Giggs should have been handed the job before Moyes was appointed, pointing to the continuity it would give to the legacy of the Ferguson era which I cannot argue with but game in its current landscape requires, especially at continental level, a mastery of things that are outside the simple capabilities of being a professional football player.
There is, of course, the transfer market, the media interaction, the pressure from the chairman, owners, and chief executive, the requirement of scouting and assigning a youth policy and whilst many of those tasks can be delegated, clubs that excel in all areas are usual the product of a manager with a focused philosophy. Who knows if Ryan Giggs even has a philosophy of his own at this moment in time?
The point remains that Giggs is the archetypal one-club man, a true club legend, one of the best players of his generation, a leader and an icon but a manager or even an experienced coach he is not. Perhaps now he will have his chance to prove his credentials beyond the work he has achieved with a football for the last 29 years at Old Trafford and if he proves successful, perhaps he’ll be granted a permanent stay.