“I’m incredibly excited to be here. I understand the passion and intimidation of the fans and I want to recreate that and harness that in the coming months.”
Neville is pumped
G Nev: “I understand from playing here the atmosphere and intimidation that you get from the fans and I want to harness that.”
Backroom staff confirmed
Neville: “One thing to announce is the coaches: one is my brother Phil and [Miguel Ángel] Angulo, coach of the Under 19s.”
Style over substance?
Neville is asked about the team's style of play, and Nev responds:
“I’m very aware of the traditions and how they play.
“I understand I need to appraise the players as soon as possible to find our best style of play and win games as soon as possible.
“We have big games coming up and at the moment the most important thing is to win games regardless of style.”
GNev responds to a question about whether he'll stay beyond the end of the season: “You have to approach every job as a permanent job. Every decision I make will be a long-term decision. I’m not interested in bringing over an army of coaches. I’m going to promote from within, as I have done this morning.”
The best question so far
What’s the correct pronunciation of your name? ”Neville,” replies Neville.
Will Nev be joined by the Class of '92?
GNev says: “We will appoint people from within.
“I believe in promoting the growth of this football club and won’t be bringing over an army of coaches.
“My family will move over here permanently.
“My girls finish school in Manchester in two weeks and move over to Valencia.
“When I was in Manchester I wanted footballers from abroad to show commitment to the club and the way of life so I have done that even though the contract is only for six months.”
Neville explains why he took the job
Nev says: “I think I’ve been offered jobs in football over the last four or five years but timing hadn’t feel right and I wanted to learn.
“When I received the call on Sunday evening I thought what a football club, what an opportunity, what a challenge.
“Sitting on television, talking about coaches for these last few years, the time had come for me to stand up.”
Will you be learning Spanish?
Neville: “Spanish is going to be my biggest challenge as I don’t speak the language. I will take lessons every day. I have a problem - I can’t find a Spanish teacher who will get up at 6am.”
Gary on Phil
Neville senior says: “If Phil wasn’t here I would want him here.
“He’s diligent, hard-working and form my point of view I’m delighted he’s part of the coaching set-up. We don’t do niceties and we talk about actions and what we’re going to do.
“My conversations with him have been about how we’re going to work, what we’re going to do, information about the players.”
The story so far
GNev talks the press through his first day at Valencia: “I went to the training ground and met with the players and staff,” says Neville.
“I didn’t want to confuse them because they have an important match on Saturday and they need to concentrate on that - they don’t need to get too contaminated by words from me at this stage.
“I just told them I’m here to give my all and to give my best and I expect the same from them really.”
What's Phil said about the team?
GNev says: “He speak very highly of them. Confidence has been an issue over the past few weeks, but that happens at clubs.
“In terms of advice, Phil and Angulo form part of the coaching team – it won’t be a dictatorial approach.”
Gary is asked: "What would you have said as a MNF pundit if a Spanish pundit had got one of the top jobs in English football with no experience and no language?”
Neville: “I would question it as a neutral observer. I’d be sceptical. I understand I’ve got to prove to the Valencia fans and players that I’m capable of doing this job. Doubts will only be removed by winning football matches.”
A reporter asks if Neville's managerial style will be similar to Sir Alex Ferguson's.
Neville says: “I’m not going to insult Valencia FC by telling them that I’m going to come over here and get them playing football like Manchester United. I’ve got to play football in the traditions of Valencia. My experience with Sir Alex are valuable. Every coach wants to play attacking attractive football but you also have to win.”
Nevile conifrms he won't be on the bench against Barca
“First of all, I won’t be on the bench against Barcelona [on Saturday night],” says GNev.
“On Sunday evening the first contact was made, by Monday evening it was accepted (I obviously needed to talk to my family overnight which I did). Tuesday we talked about logistics and coaching, Wednesday was announcement and today was the first time I could get over here.
“We decided earlier in the week it was too soon, too unprofessional to come in the day before such a big match.
“It would have been unfair on the players.”
Backing from Woy
Neville intends to stay on as England assistant manager, and he said: “In terms of the FA and the England football team, when I spoke to Roy he was incredibly supportive and he understood completely the opportunity for myself.
“He was behind me 100%, we have the two games in march during the international break so from my point of view, I wanted to complete my job through to the European Championships but I want people to know that Valencia is my priority 95-99% of the time.”
Playing a long game?
Neville says he's not thinking about managing England or United one day. “From a long-term perspective … I would never look at it like that. I’m focussed on training sessions on Sunday and Monday. Where I am in five years time is an irrelevance at the moment.”
Relationship with owner Peter Lim
Neville got the job largely through his relationship with Valencia owner Peter Lim, whom he knows from working together at Salford City.
"The relationship with Peter is not a problem,” says Neville.
On accusations of a lack of experience, Neville says: “We’ve all seen inexperienced coaches succeed and experienced coaches fail.
“There is no magic formula.
“I understand completely why you would be sceptical and want to ask these questions but I have to provide these answers for you on the pitch in the coming months”
How will you communicate with your staff?
Neville: “A lot of the coaching team speak English but to be clear I expect myself to turn more Valencian not them to become more English.
I’ll expect the players to assist. At Old Trafford players were excellent at helping people settle in. I’m aware I have to pick up key phrases as quickly as possible and learn as quickly as possible.”
Neville hopes it's win-win
GNev: “I only know one way and that is to expect to win every single match.
“It’s the absolute minimum expectation of every fan and it should be the same at Valencia.
“The fans at a football club are the most important people at the club. I know the Valencia fans are demanding fans and they should be demanding. It’s up to us on the coaching side to meet those demands.”
Did you speak to Fergie about taking the job?
Neville: “No, I didn’t consult him about taking the job. I made the decision myself and with my family. I have spoken to him in the last few days. He offered support and advice and encouragement. It would be ignorant of me not to listen to that advice [from Ferguson and other coaches such as Hodgson].”
What about your role at Salford City?
Nev “I don’t play for them! I have lots of interests in the UK but for the time being they are parked.
"Salford has a 14 person committee, it’s got a coaching staff, it’s got three other owners who live very close to the ground. My input is minimal in that sense. The club runs itself extremely well.”
What are your aims for the club?
Neville: “I think the absolute intention is to deliver success straight away, that has to be the case at a club of Valencia’s size. It’s a rollercoaster, clubs go through periods that are less good than others. The owners are committed to long-term success. I can’t think short-term, it wouldn’t be me.”
Neville on making the Valencia stadium a tough place to go: “When I played here in the late 90s and early 2000s this was a horrible place to play in for visiting teams. That is the ultimate: to get the fans excited, to get them as ferocious as they were when we came here all those years ago, when it was hard to get a shot on target, never mind score a goal.”
What have you learned from the managers you've worked under?
GNev: “I wasn't necessarily taking notes but always remembering and noticing what was good. You rememeber their traits, their mannerisms, what you liked, what you didn’t like.
"For my management style the last four or five years outside of football will be the main influence. The last five years, I feel, have been the time that I’ve needed to develop and mature as a person to have the confidence to take a role of this stature.”
Thoughts on working into a sporting director?
Neville: “I’ve seen sporting directors work and not work. It’s about the quality of the individuals involved, and having clear roles and responsibilities. I’m very clear about my role this season.”
Have you spoken to the club about signings?
Neville: “No, I haven’t. The idea of a coach talking about players who aren’t at the club would disgust me. The players here are the ones wearing the shirt. It’s not a consideration. I work with the players we have.”
“It’s easy to make decisions on young players too soon, to say: ‘We need to buy players.’ I’m very patient. I will make no decision that isn’t a long term decision.”
Positives and weaknesses
GNev: “In the last few weeks it’s confidence and belief that has faltered slightly. In terms of what I’m excited by, I’ve seen qualities in all of the players, they wouldn’t be here otherwise. They all start with a clean slate, they all have an equal opportunity.”
Van Gaal: "It’s a very big club in Spain with a lot of history, more or less like Manchester United. It is a big step for him. His first club is a big club so it shall be a big step and a big challenge."
Took a risk going there. Hasn't worked out. Has tried to run before he can walk. Probably learnt a lot for the experience though. If he wants to continue in management, should look to lower English divisions, choose a good club and learn the trade.
I feel for Neville to be honest but think he took too big a risk in the first place.
Not only did he take over a club that were underperforming but it's a huge European club... In country that he never even played in regularly and a language he doesn't speak.
I for one was shocked when he was announced as the Valencia boss but I thought actually he'd make a success of it. He's shown for Sky Sports that he's got a brilliant technical knowledge of the game. Plus he was always a leader for the club so I thought he'd have what it takes. And of course failure in Spain doesn't mean he can't go on to succeed in management...
Trouble is does he want to? He's already said he isn't sure his long term future is in management... So what is it in? And if it's not management then why did he take the job? Such a huge job that's a poisoned chalice?