Manchester United host Everton today, a fixture that turned around United’s season last time around when Everton came from behind to secure a 4-4 draw which meant United lose the title to their rivals Manchester City by goal difference.
However, ahead of tonight’s game against the Red Devils, Everton boss David Moyes reveals how he was interviewed by Manchester United for a job as an assistant to Sir Alex Ferguson back in 1999. Moyes was managing Preston North End, a third division side at that time and was called up Sir Alex and the two met to discuss the role and after several months Ferguson rejected Moyes and took in Steve McClaren, then Derby’s first-team coach, at the start of February 1999.
Moyes who continued his managerial stint at Preston till 2002, moved to the blue half of the Merseyside managing Everton since then.
“I met Fergie in the year they won the Champions League,” Moyes told reporters. “He asked me to have a cup of tea with him. He was looking for an assistant. I met him but he gave the job to McClaren.
“I was fine with that because I was enjoying what I was doing at Preston but, if that opportunity had come, I wouldn’t have turned it down. Maybe it was a good decision not to do it.
“They went on to win the European Cup and have been very successful since but I’m happy with the way it’s worked out for me.”
With over 500 games under his belt for Everton, Moyes has done an excellent job with them and is also gunning down a chance at pushing Everton to a Champions league place this season. Talking about his team and the Champions league qualification, Moyes said:
“I’ve got a really good team and I feel responsible to help get that team even better. This is the best team since I’ve been here, albeit the team who got to the Champions League was tough, resilient and worked hard. This team have a little bit more flair.”
“In the first two months our football was excellent and to be fair we’ve hung in there,” Moyes said. “Now we have to keep it going and that’s where the expectation starts. But our history has suggested we do well in the second half of the season so we’ve got to somehow hang in there.
“The Champions League is something we’ve got to aim for and we don’t know if it’s going to be too far away from us or not. What we’re saying to the others is: ‘We’re in there, we’re going to actually compete with you.’
“Will we have enough when it comes to the end of the season? I’m not sure. But if I can’t make the Champions League, I want to make the Europa League because Everton need European football.”