Ryan Giggs
Giggs left United after 29 years but not before being turned down for the manager's job in favour of MourinhoGetty Images

Ryan Giggs' exit from Manchester United was sparked by the club overlooking him to replace Louis van Gaal, according to new boss Jose Mourinho. Giggs' exit from Old Trafford after 29 years was confirmed over the weekend, with the club's most-capped player stating his wish to go into management.

The 42-year-old had operated as assistant to Van Gaal during each of the last two seasons and was eager to be considered to succeed the Dutchman following his sacking after the FA Cup final win over Crystal Palace. But after being ignored by the Glazer family - the former Wales international has moved on to pastures new.

Mourinho has revealed United offered Giggs the opportunity to remain in any capacity he wished, including continuing as assistant coach, but that the club legend decided against staying at Old Trafford. However, the door is not yet closed for the 13-time Premier League winner with Mourinho happy for him returning in the future.

"It is not my responsibility that Ryan is not in the club," Mourinho told reporters on his unveiling as United boss. "The job Ryan wanted is the job that the club decided to give me. It is not my fault. Ryan wanted to be Man United manager. And the club, for the reasons only [executive vice-chairman] Mr Woodward and the owners can tell you, they decided the job was for me.

Analysing the Red Devils' legend's shock departure which has proven unpopular in the eyes of many United fans, Mourinho added: "From this moment Ryan wants to be a manager. Ryan makes his decision. Did I offer him a job? He could have been what he wanted at the club. The club wanted to give him any job, any important job in the club. He made a decision where you need to be brave.

"For Ryan it is not just the step of going from assistant manager to manager, it is also the step of leaving his house for 29 years. He was brave, he was honest; so good luck. If one day he wants to be back at the club [United] while I am here I will never stop him. I will always say yes if the club asks my opinion. And if one day the club offers him the chance to become the manager I think it will be something natural and a consequence of his success in his managerial career."