Premier League - Moyes meets Kenwright ahead of expected United appointment

David Moyes has met Everton chairman Bill Kenwright ahead of his expected appointment as manager of Manchester United after Sir Alex Ferguson announced he will retire.

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Everton manager David Moyes (left) with chairman Bill Kenwright CBE (PA)

Kenwright cut a resigned figure after meeting Moyes late on Wednesday - and admitted he could do little to prevent the Scot from making the seemingly inevitable move.

Although there has been no further announcement from United following Ferguson's retirement bombshell, Moyes is widely reported to be top of their list of candidates to replace his fellow Scot.

And it is impossible to see Moyes turning any offer down - his contract with Everton is due to expire in the summer.

"I don't know about a deal being done. David had a meeting scheduled with me and it was a good meeting," Kenwright told Sky Sports News after leaving his office just before 11pm.

"At the end of the day David's contract is up in six weeks time and he has a right to make his own decisions.

"He has served this club wonderfully well and he has a right to make his decision."

Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho had briefly shared favourite status with Moyes but the odds on the Portuguese drifted out to 10-1 by the end of the day.

Sir Bobby Charlton, who has significant influence at Old Trafford, does not believe Mourinho's capacity for external and internal conflict sits well.

It would see Moyes becoming United's 20th manager, and the seventh Scot, joining an illustrious list which includes Sir Matt Busby, Tommy Docherty and, of course, Ferguson himself.

Ferguson will stay on at Old Trafford as an ambassador and director at the 20-times English champions and United may also require the 71-year-old to act as a mediator should Moyes replace him.

Swamped under the Ferguson headlines, reports have surfaced that United striker Wayne Rooney has once again asked to leave Old Trafford.

Rooney began his career at Everton under Moyes, but the two subsequently fell out over an account in one of Rooney's autobiography of how the player came to leave Everton and sign for United.

However a United spokesman said on Wednesday that Rooney was not for sale.

The striker criticised United's ambition in 2010 before performing a U-turn and signing a five-year contract extension days later. Rooney's form has been varied this season and he has often sat on the bench for key games.

Moyes has spent 11 years at Goodison and has built a strong reputation by continually overachieving on a smaller budget than arch rivals Liverpool as well as other Premier League sides.

The lucrative Champions League group stages remained a step too far, however, and a 2009 FA Cup final loss to Chelsea was the closest he came to ending a barren run without a trophy for the nine-times English champions.

Moyes's European experience, limited to just 26 games, which have yielded 14 wins, is less than United have managed in the last three seasons alone.

"If it is David Moyes then I congratulate him and feel sorry for him," former United boss Tommy Docherty told the BBC. "How can you follow the impossible?"

"The qualities we are looking for are the ones that have been inherent at Manchester United for many years," chief executive David Gill told MUTV. "Our two most successful eras were with managers who got involved with all aspects of the club, from the youth team to the first team, and had that degree of loyalty and understanding of the football club.

"Clearly he has to have the requisite football experience, both in terms of domestic and European experience. It is a small pool but we will move forward."

Moyes' name is openly being discussed in the United dressing room and it now would be a sensational development if the 50-year-old was not installed, even if he could well end the season at Everton as Ferguson is not standing down until after his final game at West Brom on May 19 - his 1,500th in charge.

Ferguson has never made any secret of his admiration for a fellow Glaswegian, stating as recently as February that a failure to secure a top-four berth was not a slight on Moyes.

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