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Gary Breen praises Manchester United's re-hiring of 'brilliant' Mike Phelan

Arthur O'Dea
Arthur O'Dea

05:43 22 Dec 2018


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One of many onlookers unafraid to share their scepticism regarding Manchester United's temporary appointment of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, former Irish international Gary Breen has reserved praise for the return of Alex Ferguson's former assistant, Mike Phelan.

Speaking to Off the Ball on today's Football Saturday Live, Breen admitted he was left bemused by the return of the Norwegian.

"I think it's a staggering appointment bearing in mind his CV as a manager," Breen stated.

"To suggest that because Alex Ferguson is his mentor that suddenly you've got Alex Ferguson II, listen, we've been down that road."

With United sitting 11 points shy of fourth-placed Chelsea in the Premier League race prior to Saturday evening's clash with Cardiff City, Breen ultimately believes the club's desperation to bring the fans back on side influenced Ed Woodward's hand as CEO.

"I see it as just trying to appease the supporters," Breen believes, "trying to get them back on side and hopefully cajole a performances out of their big-name players."

It's not all bad news as far as Breen is concerned, however.

"I was remiss not to mention that Mike Phelan's gone back there," Breen stated before going on to highlight the potentially positive nature of this return.

"Now, I know Mike, I was on a coaching course with him and he was a brilliant man to pick the brains of.

"So, he'll bring a bit of that there.

"Kieran McKenna is a really highly thought of coach too, so that dynamic may well work, with Solskjaer the figurehead as such."

Although the possibility of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer retaining the role on a permanent basis remains open, Breen ultimately believes that United are desperate to appoint the current Tottenham Hotspur manager, Mauricio Pochettino.

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