Rene Meulensteen, the former first team coach of Manchester United for the past five years under the imperious Sir Alex Ferguson, now finds himself stuck in a managerial limbo.
Since the departure of Ferguson from Manchester United, Meulensteen surprisingly found himself being cast aside by David Moyes, following the Scotsman's insistence upon bringing his own backroom staff to Old Trafford. Consequently, Meulensteen embarked on a 16 day journey to Russia as the manager of Anzhi Makhachkala, only to be informed that the clubs stock and wage bill had severely plummeted. In turn, Meulensteen's managerial career in Russia was swiftly terminated.
Meulensteen, 49, revealed that he informed Manchester United of the potential of new Chelsea starlet Willian, by stating: "There were good players like Willian, a player who can make a difference, a player that people come to the stadium to watch. A good character too. I made United aware of him straight away when things were going belly-up."
Meulensteen was also left frustrated with the FA, following their failure to approach him for the managerial vacancy of the England Under-21 side. Meulensteen told the Daily Telegraph: "How can they pick the right candidate if they’re not even listening to others? My mates on holiday said 'you’d be great for the Under-21s’. I said: 'Believe me, they won’t go for a foreigner.’ But I’ve been in this country for 12 years. I’ve more affinity with younger players from England than from Holland. I know Welbeck, Cleverley, Larnell Cole, Jesse Lingard. Great players.’’
However, Meulensteen’s permanent association with Manchester United talent is set to be dispelled, as he waits for the managerial axe to swing across the Premier League. With Paolo Di Canio suffering the first dismissal, it remains clear that the Sunderland job has failed to entice the Dutchman, which is rather unsurprising due to the large influx of Di Canio's summer signings being given just five games to gel together, before the board panicked and terminated the Italian's contract.
Nevertheless, the managerial hot-seat at Craven Cottage has certainly attracted the attention of Meulensteen. Fulham's new owner Shahid Khan is reported to have met Meulensteen to discuss the possibility of replacing Martin Jol. The meeting is thought to have taken place, following Fulham's atrocious run of losing four out of a possible five games. Moreover, Saturday's game against Stoke City has become a managerial six-pointer, with the losing manager set to be on the receiving end of both a hostile crowd and board of directors.
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