A new alternative for the new Man United

With all of the excitement surrounding the appointment of Pep Guardiola to become Manchester City boss from the beginning of next season, many people are wondering whether Manchester United will become the weaker Manchester giant over the next few years?

This has been fuelled further by the on going speculation surrounding Louis Van Gaal’s future as Manchester United boss, coupled with the anger of the fans directed at Van Gaal’s sterile style of play.

Many of these fans are demanding an immediate change in management, with the majority hoping that Guardiola would be the next man in charge at Old Trafford, but it has been suggested in the last few days that Man United hadn’t made any advance for the former Barcelona manager.

So, with Guardiola ruled out as the next Man United manager who will it be?

The logical choice on most people’s mind is Ryan Giggs, who has spent the entirety of his football life at Old Trafford. With that being said there has been concerns about his lack of outright managerial experience considering the size of the job he would be taking on.

The other name in the mix has been the former Chelsea, Inter Milan and Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho. He is the more experienced option, having won 2 Champions leagues with Porto and Inter, and league titles in every country in which he has managed.

The downside to this appointment lies in Mourinho’s temperament, and how it can lead to rifts within his squads, much like what happened to him at Madrid and more recently Chelsea.

Within the last few days a new name has been thrown into the hat and it could be a risk, but it could also be an inspired appointment by Manchester United.

BBC’s Dan Walker tweeted that “In the past 72 hours 3 knowledgeable individuals have suggested Pochettino to Old Trafford for next season! Interesting.”

Mauricio Pochettino, the current Tottenham Hotspur boss, has made huge strides in his managerial career, coming from a four year stint as boss of Espanyol in La Liga to Southampton in 2013.

At Southampton he helped the club survive in the Premier League an introduced them to a tidy attacking style of play.

Now, at Tottenham he has continued his own development as a manager, especially in indentifying how to balance his squad.

At the spine of his current Tottenham team he has a number of veterans in Hugo Lloris in goal, Jan Vertonghen at centre back and Moussa Dembélé in midfield, who give the team its much needed experience in tough games.

Around this, he has introduced and helped to develop youngsters like Dele Alli, Harry Kane, Ryan Mason and Erik Lamela, among others.

This mix of youth and experience screams of the Manchester United of old, who played attacking football, with a strong spine in the team, surrounded by skillful young wingers and attackers.

Think of United’s Champions League winning team of 2008. At the middle of the team Edwin Van der Sar in goal, Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic in Centre back and Paul Scholes in midfield.

All great experienced players surrounded by younger players, Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney and Carlos Tevez.

Compare that team to the current United team and the difference is huge.

The new Manchester United may not buy into this appointment though, as Chief Executive Ed Woodward seems to place great importance in big names, to improve Man United as a brand moreso than a functional football team.

Will he see the logic behind Pochettino? Only time will tell.

Graham McGrath

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