SYDNEY — David Moyes would consider it a job well done if he could achieve a quarter of predecessor Alex Ferguson’s success at Manchester United, after the Scot began his reign at the English Premiership football club with a disappointing 1-0 loss in Bangkok on Saturday.
The Singha All-Star XI took the lead early in the second half through Teerathep Winothai and managed to keep the English champions, who were without frontline strikers Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney, at bay.
As part of their pre-season tour, United will next play in Sydney, followed by matches in Yokohama, Osaka and Hong Kong before facing AIK in Stockholm on August 6.
“It’s my first season as manager of Manchester United. I’m following probably the finest football manager that’s ever lived,” Moyes, who replaced the retired Ferguson at the end of last season, told reporters in Sydney on Sunday.
“I’m always saying, you know if I can even win a quarter of what he won, I’ll have done very well.
“So the first thing I’ve got to do is settle into the job, get to know everybody and find my way around.”
During his 26 years at the club, Ferguson won 38 trophies, including 13 Premier League and two Champions League titles.
Rooney, who has been the subject of intense transfer rumours since the end of last season, returned home with a hamstring injury hours after arriving in Bangkok, although Van Persie will boost Moyes’ attacking options when he joins up with the squad in Sydney.
Hoping to build on the huge success of the club’s recent past, Moyes appointed club veteran Ryan Giggs (39) as player-coach and added former defender Phil Neville to his backroom staff.
Giggs, who made his senior debut for United in March 1991, is the most decorated player in English soccer with 13 Premier League winner’s medals, four FA Cup winner’s medals and two Champions League winner’s medals among his collection.
The former Welsh international, having always played under Ferguson, admitted that working with Moyes was different, but said he was enjoying the experience.
“It’s obviously strange because I’ve only had one manager for twenty-odd years, but we move on and I’ve really enjoyed it,” he said.