Premier League - Giggs future in doubt as LVG backlash begins

Despite some negative press, Louis van Gaal looks certain to get the Manchester United job but where does that leave Ryan Giggs?

Premier League - Reports: United agree deal for Van Gaal-Giggs dream team

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Louis van Gaal (Reuters) and Ryan Giggs (PA)


Van Gaal's coronation as Manchester United manager is moving ever closer with an announcement expected sometime next week.

However, it appears that the Dutchman will only agree to the position if he can bring in his own backroom team.

Van Gaal wants to bring in Patrick Kluivert as his assistant as well as coach Danny Blind, goalkeeping coach Frans Hoek, fitness coach Jos van Dijk and analyst Max Reekers.

That would leave little room for the Class of 92' - Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt and Phil Neville.

United will be desperate to keep Giggs, with the Welshman looking every bit a future United boss during his brief spell as caretaker.

However, Matt Dickinson is reporting in the Times that "Giggs is so uncertain about his place in the new regime under Louis van Gaal that he may have to be talked out of walking away or, at 40, perhaps devoting next season to a last one purely as a player."

Ryan Giggs said in his Friday press conference: "I've got a lot to think about, whether to carry on playing. But my concentration is just on now.

"Nothing has changed. It's just to the end of the season and we'll chat when it's over."

Despite a number of negative Van Gaal articles in Friday's papers, the bookmakers seem to now be utterly convinced that Van Gaal is the only man for the job with some of them as low as 1/10 that he will be the next Manchester United manager.

Giggs is no longer considered a realistic contender for the top job with odds of 9/1 available, while Pep Guardiola is now a distant third favourite for the position.

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This is a damned if you do and damned if you don't situation for United. They face a massive backlash if Giggs is not retained in some capacity, while at the same time, having Giggs lurking in the background during Van Gaal's regime could pose problems too, especially if the Dutchman gets off to a bad start. There seems to be a bit of a backlash against Van Gaal at the moment with many of the papers on Friday digging up quotes from former Barcelona and current Manchester City director Ferran Soriano from last March that suggests Van Gaal's style breeds enemies. While ex-Bayern coach Mehmet Scholl told the Guardian that Manchester United players will find Van Gaal's style 'difficult.' Nevertheless the Dutchman remains far more qualified for the top job than Giggs, and his big personality should be able to cope with any snakes in the grass.


It looks like United have already struck up a deal with Van Gaal and the final make-up of his backroom staff is the only stumbling block left to overcome. No doubt Van Gaal will draw up a list of players he would like and hand it to Ed Woodward who will then look to get busy in the transfer market. It is a big window for Woodward to prove his worth and clinching these deals will be up to him with the World Cup taking up all of Van Gaal's attention. Giggs has an interesting decision to make: he is Manchester through-and-through, but is he happy waiting on the sidelines for potentially three seasons, or could he be tempted to take a top job elsewhere? Tottenham, Aston Villa, Newcastle and West Ham are four Premier League positions that could open up in the summer – you would expect at least one of them would be interested in Giggs if the feeling was mutual.

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Matt Dickenson (The Times): The imminent arrival of Van Gaal threatens fresh upheaval. Senior United sources have said that they would not recruit a coach of the Dutchman’s standing and antagonise him by imposing staff, yet Ed Woodward, the executive vice-chairman, also knows how foolish it would be to lose Giggs and the rest of the backroom team given their long associations with Old Trafford and their promise as coaches. Van Gaal is due to be confirmed as the successor to David Moyes by the middle of next week, but Woodward faces a nightmare task trying to keep everyone happy given that the Dutchman, while expressing a willingness to work with Giggs and others, also wants to bring his own staff. Giggs is in charge until the end of the season and, while he is willing to accept that the permanent job should go to someone with experience, he does not want to feel a spare part in the coaching regime as he did under Moyes.

Matt Law (The Daily Telegraph): The Dutch have a joke: What is the difference between Van Gaal and God? God knows he is not Van Gaal. Nicknamed the Iron Tulip, Van Gaal rates himself with good reason. His self-confidence is often interpreted as arrogance, but those who have worked with him describe another side to the 62-year-old’s tough personality. Van Gaal is said to communicate well with his players and is willing to accept different personalities among his squad. He also springs the odd surprise, as his former Bayern Munich players will confirm: Van Gaal exposed his genitals to them as part of a team-talk. Players cross Van Gaal at their peril, with punctuality one of his biggest bugbears. Turn up late once and get told off, twice and you get dropped.

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