Manchester United manager-to-be David Moyes has been backed to uphold the greatest traditions of the Old Trafford outfit.
While there are some fans who have reservations over whether the 50-year-old Scot has the necessary experience, especially in Europe, to succeed in the most pressurised of jobs, and others wonder about his lack of major trophies, three of the most significant figures at United have no doubts.
It was the recommendation of the man he is to replace, Sir Alex Ferguson, and support from director and United legend Sir Bobby Charlton, that provided the major influence for Moyes’s appointment.
And from within the United dressing room there have been significant words of encouragement too.
“I have always said we wanted the next manager to be a genuine Manchester United man,” said Charlton, whose influence on the club as a figurehead extended to ensuring Ferguson was not toppled during the early days of his reign.
“In David Moyes, we have someone who understands the things that make this such a special club.
“We have secured a man who is committed to the long-term and will build teams for the future as well as now. Stability breeds success.
“David has tremendous strength of character and recognises the importance of bringing young players through and developing them alongside world-class talent.
“At United, I think David will be able to express himself. I’m delighted he has accepted and I’m looking forward to working with him.”
As Ferguson outlined, Moyes was first approached about a job with United in 1998, when he was still manager at Preston.
That was to replace Brian Kidd as Ferguson’s assistant, but instead he chose to remain at Deepdale before eventually being snapped up by Everton two years later.
Ferguson’s admiration for Moyes’s work never wavered.
He was impressed at how he repeatedly guided the Toffeemen into the top half of the table, even though he had significantly inferior resources to the Premier League’s most powerful clubs. Once he had decided it was time to end his own illustrious tenure, there was only one man for the job.
“When we discussed the candidates that we felt had the right attributes we unanimously agreed on David Moyes,” said Ferguson.
“David is a man of great integrity and one with a strong work ethic.
“I have admired his work for a long time and approached him as far back as 1998 to discuss the position of assistant manager here.
“He was a young man then at the start of his career and has since gone on to do a magnificent job at Everton.
“There is no question he has all the qualities we expect of a manager at this club.”
Moyes, who has agreed a six-year contract with United, will work with his new charges for the first time in July, when they report back for pre-season training.