New Manchester United manager David Moyes has conducted his first official press conference as boss of the English Premier League champions.
Despite his troubled history with talismanic striker Wayne Rooney, Moyes has confirmed that the 27 year-old will stay at the club and that he is not for sale. Moyes of course was Everton manager when 16 year-old Rooney made his Premier League debut back in 2002. When pushed and asked by journalists if Rooney had categorically said he wanted to stay at the club, Moyes said “I can categorically confirm that Wayne Rooney has trained fantastically well over the last few days.”
The club’s press officer then encouraged questions to be moved away from the (very popular) topic of Wayne Rooney.
When asked how the whole situation of him becoming the new Manchester United manager was brokered to him, 50 year-old Moyes stated:
“It (being informed that he would be the next Manchester United manager) was a really strange situation for me, I had no idea whatsoever.
“A lot of people think I knew something about it. I knew nothing at all until Sir Alex gave me a call, and asked me to come to his house.
“We went in and the first thing he said to me was ‘I’m retiring’. I said ‘Yeah, when?’ I mean, he was never going to retire was he? But he said ‘next week’.
“His next words were ‘and you’re the next Manchester United manager’. He didn’t give a choice, he just told me that I was going to be the next manager of Manchester United!
“As you can imagine, the blood drained from my face. I was really shocked, more shocked that Sir Alex had chosen to retire. I was incredibly thrilled that I was going to be given the chance to manage Manchester United.”
Moyes made it clear that he would not be intimidated by Alex Ferguson’s presence on the board: “I’ll actually be seeking out Alex for help and advice and I am glad that he will be in the director’s box. He’s not there to pressurise me.”
The reaction from the dressing room has been positive with captain Nemanja Vidic stating that the players “adapt quick” and are “looking forward to work with David. We have been pushing forward and working hard over these first few days of pre-season training.” Wayne Rooney has, as yet, not spoken publicly about the appointment of Moyes to the hot seat at Old Trafford.
Moyes stated that Ryan Giggs would continue playing but would also be moving onto the coaching staff along with Phil Neville who Moyes brings with him from Everton and that Paul Scholes could possibly also be added to the coaching staff.