Can Jose Mourinho and Ryan Giggs work together?
That is the question every Manchester United fan wants to know. After Mourinho was selected to replace Louis van Gaal ahead of Giggs, it was believed that the Welshman would end his long-term association with the Red Devils in pursuit of a managerial career elsewhere.
Eager to keep the former winger around, United have offered Giggs the chance to pick his own job at the club, with one condition: he can’t be Mourinho’s assistant.
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Rui Faria, Mourinho’s right-hand man in all of his former jobs, is tipped to arrive at Old Trafford, something that Giggs must surely understand.
But, according to reports, there’s another reason why the former Chelsea boss was so adamant for Giggs not to become his assistant.
The Times claim today that Mourinho has refused any calls for Giggs to stay on as assistant manager due to his fears that Giggs could challenge him for the manager’s job.
The report adds how Mourinho reckons Giggs distanced himself from Van Gaal and his predecessor, David Moyes, during difficult times in their respective reigns at Old Trafford.
Mourinho wants loyalty
Adding to Mourinho’s concerns is Giggs’ close relationship with Paul Scholes, who has publicly criticised both of United’s past two managers.
The 53-year-old requires his backroom staff to be loyal and supportive. That’s why he views Faria, who was hired by Mourinho as his assistant at Portuguese side Uniao de Leiria in 2001, so highly.
Could Mourinho trust Giggs if he secretly believes he is after his job? Probably not.
United want Giggs to stay
Whether the aspiring manager, who won 13 Premier League titles during his playing career, is willing to accept a job in another capacity to assistant manager remains to be seen.
There’s no doubt United are eager for him to stick around - he’s long been seen as a future United manager - and their best hope of doing so might be to offer him the Under-21 manager’s job.
One person eager to see Giggs leave is Peter Schmeichel. Having spent three seasons working under Moyes and Van Gaal, the former goalkeeper thinks it is time for his old teammate to stretch his managerial wings.
“It depends what Ryan's ambitions are," Schmeichel said, per the Manchester Evenings News. "His big dream is to one day manage Manchester United and I think he could do that but he has to go away and manage other clubs, stand on his own two feet, get his own ideas rather than step up and be manager.
“I would like to see him come back one day prepared for the challenge because we've seen in the last three years it's a hard job. He has got to have so many different qualities and abilities and you only get that by experience."