I know it may seem early to be talking about potential life after Van Gaal, but the fact that I am speaks volumes. Twelve months in charge has seen Van Gaal implement his tactics and the team make the expected improvements that has seen them secure a top four spot, however long term he is yet to convince me and much of the United fan base that he is going to be return the club to thev top of English football.
His pedigree and tactical nous have never been in doubt, a 3 year deal almost the perfect period for him to get the project back on track in a manner of speaking: the first year to implement his ideas and get to understand his players, the second to strengthen any areas he feels are weak and then the third and final year to bring all his plans into fruition. Personally I am confident that he will deliver and in some style too, in doing so giving both my ideal candidates – Giggs and Gary Neville three 3 years of experience in a coaching setup working with quality players.
At the end of the three year term both United legends should be primed for the possibility of taking over the reins at the Theatre Of Dreams even if it doesn’t happen.Giggs’ involvement in the First team United setup naturally would enable him to learn from Van Gaal, having been the elder statesman in the squad during his playing days you would imagine that his coaching skills are up to scratch. Where Van Gaal comes in is his man management and his positional understanding important parts of making the transition from coach to manager.
Similarly Neville can loads from working under Roy Hodgson. In some respects he has a head start on Giggs in his understanding of the game, playing full back Neville was never the quickest nor the strongest so it always put emphasis on his understanding and reading of the game, often he was one or two steps ahead of his winger. His analysis on Sky Sports is proof of this, he has been widely appreciated for his in depth understanding of teams and positional awareness much like our European counterparts. He also seems keen to the change the trend of English failure (in European competions) at both domestic and International level.
Come the end of Van Gaal’s time at Old Trafford I would expect either coach to be at the top of a long list of candidates especially as they already understand and were a part of the clubs philosophy.