Manchester United have named Neil Ryan as their new Under-18s coach ahead of the 2018/19 campaign.
Ryan, whose father Jimmy made 27 appearances for Man United, has been involved in the club’s youth development system since 2007.
He takes over from Kieran McKenna, who worked wonders with the Under-18s last season and earned a promotion to Jose Mourinho’s coaching staff as a result. Ryan will use the same body of staff which worked with McKenna to win the Under-18 Premier League North title last season.
Speaking to the club’s official website, Ryan noted it was an “honour and privilege” to be handed the task of coaching the next generation.
“I’ve grown up with Manchester United all my life and it’s an absolute honour and privilege to be here coaching the youth team,” he said. “It’s my job, and the responsibility of all the coaches in the Academy, to develop young players in the way that is expected at our club.”
“The Under-18 team made great strides last season and although there will be some big challenges ahead, I can’t wait to get the new season started.”
Former midfielder and current head of the club’s academy Nicky Butt believes Ryan has earned this opportunity following such a prolonged connection with the club.
“Neil has been coaching at United full-time for 11 years now, so he has earned this opportunity,” he said. “He has moved up through the ranks and I think he is very good at what he does.”
“He is coming into a very good set-up, as he will be assisted by the same staff that worked with Kieran McKenna last season, in Colin Little, Charlie Owen and Kevin Wolfe.
“The aim of this club is to develop the players and get them as close to the first team as possible and we believe that Neil’s appointment will help us continue that tradition.”