Manchester United legend Bryan Robson believes Ryan Giggs can be the club’s answer to Pep Guardiola.
Guardiola will replace Manuel Pellegrini as the man in charge at Manchester City from the start of next season, with speculation mounting that United will turn to Jose Mourinho in response.
But former club captain Robson feels United should look closer to home once Louis van Gaal leaves Old Trafford.
“Ryan really can be the Guardiola of United, I am sure of it,” Robson was quoted as saying by The Sun. “Yes, he’s a quiet lad but that should make no difference. He has always been a deep thinker on the game. He’s worked hard to get to this point.
“They talk about Guardiola being intelligent and having a great football brain. Ryan is no different. He just needs the chance to prove what he can do once Van Gaal goes.
“There should be no knee-jerk reaction, no panic. Guardiola has a great record but United should not be reacting to what happens at City. United should carry on what was started when Van Gaal arrived.
“It was always said that during Van Gaal’s time as manager Ryan would learn under him, get his pro-licence and be ready for the job. That should still be the case.
“People say Ryan hasn’t got the experience. But he watched how Sir Alex Ferguson worked for 26 years and he’s watching Van Gaal go about things now. He represents United’s soul. He has been at the club since he was 13 and knows what is expected.”
Ex-England skipper Robson added: “The owners will make their decision and, in terms of Mourinho, I know there have been rumours flying around. But there is no stand-out person who could do the job any better than Ryan.
“Remember, Guardiola was untried as a top-line coach before Barcelona decided to give him his chance. The only way we are going to know if Giggsy can do the job is for him to be given it.”