Wayne Rooney says ex-teammate and now interim manager Ryan Giggs has the ability to be a great manager for Manchester United, though there’s apparently no chance of that happening.
Speaking after the Red Devils throttled relegation-struggling Norwich City by a 4-0 score at Old Trafford on Saturday, Rooney was effusive with praise for the Welsh legend.
Though he admitted he has no say in the successor to the successor, Rooney even gave Giggs a little Robert Redford gloss.
‘That is down to the board, obviously,” said Rooney. “Giggsy has all the credentials to be the next boss but it’s down to the board.
“He is built to be a manager, we’ve seen that by the way he has handled himself since he took over. It was fantastic to go and get a win for him. It was great for him — he’s a natural.
“He worked under Sir Alex for many years, I am sure he will bring that to the job. We knew it was going to be a tough game, Norwich are fighting for survival, but thankfully we got four goals and a comfortable win.”
It’s hard to imagine the players wouldn’t back Giggs, which is precisely why the players don’t choose the manager. I have no doubt Giggs will be a fine leader over the course of his career and would be a perfect assistant for a few years, but a veteran manager is needed to calm the entire organization. The next time big trouble hits, Manchester United cannot entertain the possibility of the decision coming from someone in his first rodeo.
For Giggs, the day was more about relief. He agonized over lineup decisions and was as jumpy as a young player in the run-up to the match.
“I didn’t sleep last night, not a wink,” he said. “Just leaving out players was the reason I didn’t sleep. It wasn’t nice, I’ve never had to do it before. And I’ll continue not to enjoy it.
“The reception was great. I have walked out that tunnel so many times for big games and that is the best feeling of them all. I felt 10 foot tall. I was nervous but the welcome was brilliant.
“It was probably more relief to win as a manager than as a player. The first goal came at a perfect time before half-time. I just said in the dressing room, ‘Quicken up the tempo and we’ll be OK’.”