Manchester United favourite Rene Meulensteen has categorically confirmed that he will not be returning to Old Trafford to work under the stewardship of Louis van Gaal, despite rumours that persisted in claiming that he could rejoin the back-room staff.
In an interview with Sky Sports the Dutch coach revealed that he had not spoken to the new United boss at all, and that he believed the 62-year-old would look to add one his “own people” to his back-room team when he takes the reigns properly following the World Cup. This comes after claims emerged that Van Gaal had rejected the idea of allowing Meulensteen to return to the club in the wake of his hiatus since the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson. Certain sources stated that the 50-year-old was open to taking up a coaching position at United once more, but that he didn’t fit into Van Gaal’s plans.
However Meulensteen himself has rubbished such rumours, and confirmed that a scenario wherein he would work under Van Gaal as he did for Ferguson isn’t about to become reality anytime soon.
“I’ve not spoken to him,” the ex-Fulham boss said.
“I do know that he will again add one of his own people to his staff, and in that respect there’s no Rene Meulensteen going back to United.”
Whilst many United fans would have welcomed the idea of a man who knows the club so well coming back to offer his assistance, Van Gaal is very much the type of boss who likes to do things his way. The Dutchman has reportedly already scrapped transfer plans made by the Old Trafford hierarchy in place of his own drawn-up shortlist, and has also demanded that a number of changes are implemented with regards to the Carrington training ground.
As for Muelensteen’s own future, it is yet unclear as to whether or not he will take up a managerial role at another club or opt to move somewhere in an assistant’s capacity. The Dutchman thrived as first-team coach at United between 2008 and 2013, where he became a well-respected member of Ferguson’s team. However he left the club following the appointment of David Moyes, after it became apparent that the Scot wanted to introduce his own back-room staff.
Meulensteen then moved on to manage mega-rich Anzhi Makhachkala in Russia, after initially deputising for Guus Hiddink, but a bizarre set of circumstances saw him relieved of his duties after only 16 days. A stint at Fulham then came to a premature end in 2014, and he has has been without a job since.
His knowledge of the United squad and relationship with the players would no doubt come in handy given the club’s current state of affairs, but it would seem that Van Gaal is intent of creating a completely new setup at Old Trafford, which may not be an altogether bad thing.