Phil Neville
Phil Neville occupied the role of first-team coach at Manchester United under David Moyes but was not retained by Louis van Gaal.Getty Images

Former Manchester United and Everton stalwart Phil Neville has joined Valencia as an assistant coach to manager Nuno Espirito Santo, the La Liga side have now confirmed via their official website.

The 38-year-old, who made over 500 Premier League appearances during an 18-year playing career before announcing his retirement in June 2013, had been working as a TV pundit since leaving the backroom staff at Old Trafford in the aftermath of Louis van Gaal's arrival as permanent successor to David Moyes.

The Mirror first reported yesterday that Neville has emerged as a surprising contender to replace Ian Cathro at the Mestalla, with the highly-rated former Dundee United coach set to join recently appointed boss Steve McLaren at Newcastle United after leaving Valencia in June for family reasons.

According to the BBC, Cathro, affectionately dubbed as a "genius" and a "visionary" by Nuno during an interview with Uefa.com last year, has agreed a deal in principle to move to St James' Park although the club are yet to officially announce this.

Neville is said to have turned down the opportunity to join Moyes at Real Sociedad in November, but has links to Valencia's billionaire owner Peter Lim through his investment in Northern Premier League outfit Salford City.

After appointing former FC Porto goalkeeper Nuno as a replacement for Juan Antonio Pizzi last summer, Los Che subsequently finished fourth in La Liga and will have a chance to book their place in the group stages of the Champions League for the first time since 2012 if they can successfully negotiate a two-legged play-off tie in August.

Valencia also reached the last 16 of the Copa del Rey in 2014/15, but they were beaten 3-2 on aggregate by Espanyol.

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