Valencia goalkeeper Mathew Ryan is looking forward to learning from Gary Neville after the Manchester United great was appointed Valencia head coach.
Neville, 40, was presented to the media on Thursday, having been named as Nuno Espirito Santo’s replacement until the end of the season 24 hours earlier.
The England assistant coach, who will officially take charge following Valencia’s hosting of Barcelona on Saturday, heads to the Mestalla with no previous managerial experience, having worked as a pundit for Sky Sports in recent seasons.
Ryan, however, is relishing the opportunity to work with Neville, who won eight Premier League titles, three FA Cups and two Champions League crowns among other trophies during his time as a United player.
“I have a lot of respect for him as a player and now I’m looking forward to having him as my coach,” the Australia international told Omnisport.
“He always performed well and extremely consistent on the highest level and achieved pretty much everything.
“It’s great to learn from somebody like that.”
Neville, who will be assisted by brother Phil and Miguel Angel Angulo, steps into the hot seat after Nuno – the man that lured Ryan to Valencia from Club Brugge during the off-season – vacated his post following Sunday’s 1-0 loss at Sevilla.
The away defeat left the club in ninth position and two points outside the European places.
Valencia are also on the brink of elimination from the Champions League group stage with one matchday remaining.
However, Valencia’s goals remain the same as they look to compete with Europe’s best.
Ryan, who returned from a knee injury against Sevilla and retained his starting role in Valencia’s 3-1 Copa del Rey win over Barakaldo midweek, added: “It’s very early in the season for me because of my injury. It was frustrating to be kept out of matches with an injury for the first time of my senior career, but I really enjoy being back.
“There is no better feeling than walking off the pitch after winning a game – like the win we had Wednesday night in the cup. It’s the whole reason for doing what I do.
“We have high ambitions in both Champions League and La Liga and we go into every single game to win it. It’s a perfect match between the ambitions of the club and my own.”