'Man Utd's philosophy is like Barcelona or Ajax' - Neville demands new manager must respect club traditions

Comments()
Getty
The Old Trafford side's next permanent boss must play the right way and give young players belief according to the former defender

Manchester United's next permanent manager must be prevented from betraying the club's attacking traditions again, according to ex-defender Gary Neville.

Sir Alex Ferguson's successors David Moyes, Louis van Gaal and Jose Mourinho have all been sacked after adopting defensive tactics which have gone against the team's recent history.

Supporters have vented their frustrations during home matches with the chant of "attack, attack, attack" a constant theme at Old Trafford in the five-and-a-half years since Ferguson's retirement.

Interim boss Ole Gunnar Solksjaer has restored dynamism to the team, with United having plundered 17 goals in the six straight wins at the start of the Norwegian's reign.

And with a permanent boss set to be appointed in the summer, Neville wants the club to adopt a hardline policy on retaining their attacking philosophy.

"No one should ever be allowed to enter Manchester United's training ground or Old Trafford ever again to shape their own philosophy," he said on his Sky Sports podcast. "That is done.

"Manchester United's philosophy is so deep and so meaningful, it's like Barcelona's and it's like Ajax's. 

"At Manchester United you play fast, attacking football in an entertaining way. You bring young players through and give them belief. And you win."

The 43-year-old, who made over 600 appearances for United during his career, added: "What Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has done in a month, irrespective of the how the club do this season, has shown Manchester United that.

"I like watching it, that's it. I want to go to the ground again.

"There was one counter-attack in the first half at Wembley where they sprinted forward from one box to the other and I thought 'wow! I'm watching red shirts run from box to box in three seconds, passing quickly' and that's what you want to see.

Neville's preference is to see Tottenham's Mauricio Pochettino become the new long-term coach.

Many of the central themes of the Argentine's success in North London correlate with United's heritage, with the onus on attacking football using young English players, some promoted from the club's academy.

And implementing those policies are more of a priority than winning silverware, according to Neville.

Article continues below

"I'm not saying that Manchester United have to bring in a manger next that's going to win the league in the next couple of years, but they have to bring a manager in that's going to bring belief to young players from the academy that they are going to be brought through," he explained.

"They must play fast, attacking and entertaining football and if the club can win as a result of that, then that's wonderful. 

"And of course, yes, the club expect to win, but it isn't a club that's like Real Madrid in the sense that at the Bernabeu it's win at all cost."

Close