Jose Mourinho has done a good of helping Manchester United fans forget about the dismal spells under David Moyes and Louis van Goal.
Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement in 2013 led to some down years at Old Trafford. After winning the title in 2012-13, the Red Devils finished seventh, fourth and fifth in the Premier League.
They finished sixth under Mourinho last season but the 54-year-old managed to win the League Cup and the Europa League.
Now they’re back in the Champions League, where they’ve reached the knockout stage, and are currently second in the table.
One man who was present during the transition from Ferguson to Moyes to Van Gaal to Mourinho was Ryan Giggs, whose 29-year association at the club was brought to an end shortly after the Portuguese arrived last year.
Giggs retired from playing in 2014 and served as an assistant to Moyes and Van Gaal. He was even placed in temporary charge when Moyes was dismissed in April 2014.
But Mourinho brought in Rui Faria to serve as his assistant and so Giggs thought it best to move on from the club.
He’s since gone on to reveal just how difficult it was at Man United during Van Gaal’s reign, which lasted from May 2014 to May 2016.
Giggs names the players Man Utd shouldn’t have sold
In an interview with The Times, the Welshman admitted he advised Van Gaal to sign Gabriel Jesus and Kylian Mbappe, while the club should never have sold Rafael, Danny Welbeck or Jonny Evans.
“I know what a United player looks like,” Giggs said. “There have been a lot who have come through that haven’t been United players and also players who were United players and shouldn’t have left.
“I’m talking about Rafael, Welbeck, Evans – United through and through.
“It was hard because Louis had his own ideas and you had to respect that, but, yes, we had a few arguments about a couple of them. He understood my position because I had played with those lads, but they just weren’t for him.”
Giggs added: “Recruitment hasn’t been great either. I watched Gabriel Jesus play three years ago. I watched Mbappe for a year. I was watching them with the scout and it was a no-brainer.
“It was just like, ‘Get them.’ It would have been £5 million or something.”
Man City paid £27 million to sign Jesus last year, while Paris Saint-Germain can pay Monaco £165.7m to make Mbappe’s switch to the French capital permanent next year.
The fact that both are among the most promising youngsters in Europe must hurt Man United.