Carrick to leave Old Trafford after 15 years as player and coach

Aarron Pullen
Michael Carrick applauds supporters after his final game as caretaker manager
Michael Carrick applauds supporters after his final game as caretaker manager

Manchester United have announced the departure of Michael Carrick after 15 years at the club as player and coach.

The news broke just minutes after the final whistle of the Red Devils’ 3-2 victory over Arsenal in Carrick’s final game as caretaker manager.

Ralf Rangnick will take charge of all first-team affairs in his interim role from Friday morning.

Through a statement on the club’s website, Carrick said: "My time at this great club will always rank as the best years of my career. 

"When I first signed over 15 years ago, I never in my wildest dreams could have imagined winning so many trophies and I will certainly never forget the fantastic memories both as a player and as a member of the coaching team. 

"However, after a lot of thought and deliberation, I have decided that now is the right time for me to leave the club. 

"I want to place on record my thanks to all of the players and a special mention goes to the backroom staff, working long hours with such a great group of people has been a real pleasure and I have made some long-lasting friendships. 

"I am, and will always be, a Manchester United fan and will come to as many matches as possible. 

"I would like to wish Ralf, the staff, the players and the fans all the best for the future and I look forward to being in the stands and supporting the boys as a fan."

Michael Carrick brings to an end a glittering spell as a player and coach of Manchester United
Michael Carrick brings to an end a glittering spell as a player and coach of Manchester United

Speaking after the win over the Gunners, 40-year-old Carrick added: "It's not been an easy [decision] to make but I feel it's the right one. 

"I meant to take some time off after I finished playing, I promised the family we'd have some time together and it never happened! 

"It's just the right time. It's 100 per cent my decision. I wanted to make the decision before I spoke to him [Rangnick]. There was a responsibility on me to see these three games through. 

"I owe Ole [Gunnar Solskjaer] an awful lot. There's a lot of things that came into my decision. 

"I just said to the players and staff, the way we worked together, there are good, good people in there. Sometimes you get what you deserve, and sometimes you don't. 

"I'm proud of the players over the last three games. In some ways, this was the perfect night. They [the players] were a bit shocked, surprised, a little bit emotional in the changing room. I just about kept it together! 

"It's not been easy to keep it away from people in the last few days, but I was desperate to win the game tonight. 

"Hopefully, we can build on this. We've had to dig deep this week and show a side to us that people have maybe questioned in recent times. 

"There's a hell of a group of players in there. I really believe there's a successful team in there — whether it's this season or next season."

John Murtough, United's football director, was quick to pay tribute to the departing coach. 

He said: "Michael leaves with the sincerest thanks and best wishes of everyone at Manchester United after 15 years of exceptional service to the club as a player and as a coach. 

"While we are sad to see him go, we respect and understand Michael’s decision. 

"He will always be known as one of the finest midfielders in the history of Manchester United and, more recently, as an excellent coach who has worked tirelessly under two managers to help develop the strong squad which Ralf will now take charge of. 

"We are grateful for the steady leadership Michael has shown through this period of managerial transition. While he is now stepping away from day-to-day involvement, he will always be welcome back as a legend of the club."

After arriving from Tottenham in 2006, Carrick would go on to play 464 matches for Manchester United, winning five Premier League titles alongside the Champions League, Europa League, FA Cup, Club World Cup and two League Cups. 

Following his retirement in 2018, he stepped into a coaching role alongside Jose Mourinho and later Solskjaer. 

The Norwegian’s sacking last month saw Carrick assume the role of caretaker manager, overseeing three matches from which he remained undefeated.

A 2-0 Champions League victory away to Villarreal was followed by a 1-1 draw at Chelsea prior to a final game success against Arsenal.

Asked about managing a club in the future, Carrick said: "I can honestly say I've given it literally no thought. I've been so wrapped up in this week and getting through tonight." 


Premier LeagueManchester United

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