Man Utd Ghana knows that there is a long tradition of top Man United players becoming (occasionally) top managers.
Mark Hughes, Steve Bruce, Roy Keane, Paul Ince, Bryan Robson, Gordon Strachan, Laurent Blanc… there are DOZENS of men whose experience of playing under Sir Alex Ferguson has inspired them to shout at referees prowl the touchline themselves.
So we at Man Utd Ghana probably should not be too surprised to see the latest generation of recently retired United stars moving into management. Similarly, we should not be too shocked to see them already dreaming about the Old Trafford hotseat.
Ryan Giggs is already on the coaching staff. Despite his struggles at Valencia, Gary Neville is constantly talked about as a potential United boss. Ole Gunnar Solsjkaer has made no secret of his desire to return to the club one day – and both Jaap Stam and Nemanja Vidic recently admitted they would like their fledgling coaching careers to take in The Boss’ old job at some point.
So, what sort of Man United boss would each of these five up and coming managers make?
Thanks to the genius of Football Manager, Man Utd Ghana were able to find out.
Mirror Sports asked their friends at the game to run simulations of the 2016/17 season with each of our five former United stars in charge of The Red Devils. A word of warning: they put United in the Europa League (based on their current league position).
Check out the quite surprising results…
Gary Neville’s 2016/17 as Man United boss: DISASTROUS
- 1 Gary Neville’s 2016/17 as Man United boss: DISASTROUS
- 2 United finish sixth under Neville on 63 points
- 3 Ole Gunnar Solksjaer’s 2016/17 as Man United boss: ONLY SLIGHTLY LESS DISASTROUS
- 4 United finish in sixth spot on 64 points
- 5 Nemanja Vidic’s 2016/17 as Man United boss: DISAPPOINTING
- 6 Vidic steers United to a fifth place finish on 67 points
- 7 Jaap Stam’s 2016/17 as Man United boss: ACCEPTABLE
- 8 Under Stam, United secure Champions League football with a fourth place finish on 68 points
- 9 Ryan Giggs’ 2016/17 as Man United boss: PROMISING
- 10 United achieve a third place finish in the league on 72 points
- 11 So, of all their former stars currently making their way into management, it seems United’s best hope is ALREADY sitting in the Old Trafford dugout.
- 12 Man Utd Ghana thinks Louis Van Gaal will delighted by that news…
United finish sixth under Neville on 63 points
Neville does lead United to Wembley in the final of the Capital One Cup but they lose a close contest against their bitter rivals from across town, Man City
The FA Cup proves less fruitful with Neville’s side getting knocked out at the hands of Spurs in the 5th round
United also disappoint in the Europa League as they are beaten by Sporting in the first knockout round
Neville plays a 4-2-3-1 formation with Depay and Mata particularly effective in the attacking midfield positions
Martial is the top scorer with 12 goals
David de Gea is the team’s best player with an average rating of 7.59
Notable results from Neville’s time in charge include: doing the double over City in the Manchester derbies and edging out Liverpool 3-2 at Anfield
Ole Gunnar Solksjaer’s 2016/17 as Man United boss: ONLY SLIGHTLY LESS DISASTROUS
United finish in sixth spot on 64 points
Solksjaer’s team is knocked out the domestic cup competitions in the 4th round after United lose to Burnley in the Capital One Cup and Leicester in the FA Cup
Solksjaer’s best performance comes in the Europa League as United reach the semi-finals before Villarreal edge a tight contest 3-2 on aggregate
Solksjaer plays a 4-2-3-1 formation with much of his attacking play stemming from the central midfield pairing of Schneiderlin and Schweinsteiger
Martial and Depay are joint top goalscorers with 11 each
Depay is also the team’s best performing player with an average rating of 7.77
Notable results from the league season include: a 6-0 thrashing of Southampton at Old Trafford, draws against Arsenal and Man City and a 2-1 win over Chelsea
Nemanja Vidic’s 2016/17 as Man United boss: DISAPPOINTING
Vidic steers United to a fifth place finish on 67 points
His side are knocked out of the Capital One Cup in the 3rd round by Middlesbrough before being beaten in the 4th round of the FA Cup by fierce rivals Liverpool
An away goals defeat in the second knockout round of the Europa League leaves Vidic trophyless at the end of the season
Vidic’s formation of choice is a 4-4-1-1 with Martial as the lone striker and Juan Mata as the sole attacking midfielder, playing off the shoulder of the front man
Martial and Depay lead the way in the scoring charts with 15 and 10 respectively while Wayne Rooney chips in with 7
Man Utd’s best performing player is Mata with an average rating of 7.58
Notable results from Vidic’s season include: a 2-0 win over City at the Etihad, a 3-1 home win over Spurs and a 2-0 win over Liverpool at Anfield
Jaap Stam’s 2016/17 as Man United boss: ACCEPTABLE
Under Stam, United secure Champions League football with a fourth place finish on 68 points
United do well in the cups as they reach the semi-finals of the FA Cup before slipping to a defeat against Everton and they also make it to the quarter-finals of the Capital One Cup where Stam’s men are beaten 2-1 by Arsenal
Their Europa League campaign also ends in the quarter-finals as Sevilla record a 5-3 aggregate victory after an entertaining two-legged tie
Stam’s preferred formation is a 4-2-3-1 with Martial as the frontman and Depay, Mata and Januzaj in the attacking midfield positions
Martial is the club’s top scorer with 13 goals, followed by Rooney on 11
David de Gea is the best performing player over the course of the season with an average rating of 7.88
Notable results include: a 1-0 home win over Chelsea, a 5-0 win over Everton in the penultimate game of the season and a pair of draws in the Manchester derbies
Ryan Giggs’ 2016/17 as Man United boss: PROMISING
United achieve a third place finish in the league on 72 points
Giggs doesn’t fare as well in the domestic cups as his side are knocked out in the 3rd round of each competition
Their Europa League campaign is more successful as the team reach the quarter-finals of the tournament before coming up short against a strong Napoli
Giggs plays a 4-2-4 formation that features two advanced wingers coming up to support the strikers
The goals flow with the attacking tactic as Martial, Depay, Rooney and Mata all hit double figures
Martial is the club’s best performer with an average rating of 7.72
Notable results include: a 2-0 win over Arsenal at the Emirates, a 3-2 home win against Liverpool and a 4-2 win at White Hart Lane