Louis van Gaal will be appointed Manchester United manager after their final home game of the season against Hull City on Tuesday next week.
- Louis Van Gaal: Next Manchester United Manager's 8 Crazy Moments
- Manchester United Transfer Gossip: Targets Include Marco Reus, Mats Hummels And Toni Kroos
- Roy Keane Would 'Probably Not' Talk To Sir Alex Ferguson If He Returns To Manchester United
The club are expected to announce Van Gaal, 62, as David Moyes' successor on Wednesday, after United resolved a minor issue regarding Van Gaal's backroom staff.
United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward will defy Sir Alex Ferguson's advice to appoint Ryan Giggs, whose future at the club, along with his fellow Class of '92 coaching colleagues Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt, Phil Neville, and goalkeeping trainer Chris Woods, is now enshrouded in doubt.
Van Gaal's Holland national team assistant, Patrick Kluivert, physio Jos Van Dijk, goalkeeping coach Frans Hoek and analyst Max Reckers are all set to follow him to Manchester. Kluivert memorably rejected United in 1998 to join Van Gaal at Barcelona, commenting, "For me, at that moment, there was only one club in England and that was Arsenal."
Van Gaal was always Woodward's preferred choice to replace Moyes, although Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti was also under consideration, but Real's 4-0 annihilation of Bayern Munich on Tuesday retained the club's hopes of a first Champions League title in 12 years. Ancelotti has already brought the Copa del Rey back to Madrid and they remain in contention to regain the Primera Liga title.
Giggs was never considered to become United manager, despite Ferguson's public advice. "I think that he [Giggs] is the one man they should go to, really," Ferguson said at a fundraising dinner in Manchester last Friday. Despite the Scot's ambassadorial role at the club, his influence is waning, having anointed Moyes last year.
Giggs will manage United for the second time on Saturday when Sunderland visit Old Trafford, having overseen the 4-0 thrashing of Norwich City last week. He will take charge for the final time on the the final day of the campaign at Southampton.
The Welshman will again be flanked by former teammates Scholes, Butt and Neville, who Ferguson hoped would ease the club's transition following his retirement.
"They understand the club, they are hard workers, they are straight as a die," Ferguson added a week ago. "So you have got the right combinations there, there's no doubt about that." Van Gaal, who has never managed in English football, is keen to retain Giggs, however it seems unmanageable Neville, Scholes and Butt will also remain in a crowded dugout.
Van Gaal delayed announcing his 23-man Holland squad for the World Cup finals, fuelling speculation he was concluding negotiations with United. The Dutch will rendezvous at their World Cup training camp in Hoenderloo next week.
Enjoying his second stint as Holland coach, Van Gaal won three Eredivisie titles, the Uefa Cup and the Champions League with Ajax in the 90s, before succeeding Bobby Robson at Barcelona in 1997, where he collected two La Liga titles and the Copa del Rey.
A scarcely believable Eredivisie championship win with AZ Alkmaar in 2009 preceded a Bundesliga title with Bayern Munich, whom he led to the Champions League final in 2010.
Van Gaal faced Ferguson four times as a coach. Twice with Barcelona in 1998, as they and United played out two unforgettable 3-3 draws, and with Bayern Munich 12 years later, when they eliminated United from the Champions League quarter-finals on away goals.