Manchester - Louis van Gaal will be armed with a £6 million-a-year salary and £200m (R3,4bn) transfer budget to help him ‘make history’ as Manchester United’s new manager.
The Holland coach’s appointment as David Moyes’s successor on a three-year deal was confirmed at 2pm on Monday, an hour after an internal email informed staff.
Ryan Giggs was installed as his assistant and immediately announced his retirement as a player to concentrate on his new role.
United still want to involve three other members of the Class of 92 - coaches Phil Neville, Nicky Butt and Paul Scholes - but no roles have been specified yet.
Van Gaal will start officially after the World Cup, but has already begun by ordering a series of backroom changes and drawing up a list of transfer targets.
While Germany defenders Mats Hummels and Holger Badstuber, midfielders such as Toni Kroos and Arjen Robben and striker Mario Mandzukic are under consideration, decisions have already been implemented on backroom staff.
Goalkeeper coach Chris Woods, chief scout Robbie Cooke and analyst James Smith are out, though Van Gaal decided against bringing in Patrick Kluivert from the Dutch set-up. Nor will he pursue Danny Blind, who stays with Holland to assist Guus Hiddink. Frans Hoek, Holland’s goalkeeping coach, and Marcel Bout, a specialist in opposition scouting, join Van Gaal at United.
There are no plans to present 62-year-old Van Gaal to the media but in a statement, United’s first foreign manager said: ‘It was always a wish for me to work in the Premier League.
‘To work as a manager for United, the biggest club in the world, makes me very proud. I have managed in games at Old Trafford and know what an incredible arena (it) is. This club has big ambitions. I too have big ambitions. Together, I’m sure we will make history.’ Kluivert had been tipped to assist him, but Van Gaal’s wish for a No 2 with a deep knowledge of United’s tradition gave Giggs the edge.
In an open letter to United fans, the 40-year-old said: ‘I am proud, honoured and fortunate to have represented the biggest club in the world 963 times. ‘My dream was to play for United and I’ve been lucky enough to fulfil that dream, playing with some of the best players in the world under an incredible manager in Sir Alex Ferguson.‘This is a fantastic day. Louis van Gaal is a great appointment and I am delighted to be working with someone of his calibre.
I will learn a lot from being able to observe and contribute at such close quarters. I am positive the club will thrive under his leadership.’
United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward said: ‘We have one of the outstanding managers in the game. His record across Europe makes him the perfect choice.’