Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has turned down the opportunity to re-hire Rene Meulensteen, the Dutch coach has confirmed.
Meulensteen, 50, spent 12 years at Old Trafford during two spells at the club where he garnered a reputation as one of Sir Alex Ferguson's most trusted lieutenants on the training pitch.
But following Ferguson's retirement, his replacement David Moyes chose not to retain the services of the respected Dutch coach, who left the club to pursue his own managerial aspirations.
Underwhelming spells at Anzhi Makhachkala and later Fulham have seen Meulenseen consider a return to coaching, but a return to United is not an option as van Gaal looks to build his own backroom staff.
"I would have been keen to go back," Meulensteen said at the release of the LMA Annual Castrol European Managers and Coaches Survey.
"I spent 12 years at what is a fantastic club and never left Man United because I never fell out with anyone there, but they've chosen to appoint Louis van Gaal and he has decided to bring in his own people so that is not an option."
When asked whether the incoming United manager had categorically ruled out his return, Meulensteen added: "Yes, I know that is the case, it has been confirmed to me.
"It is disappointing. When you spend 12 years at a club the size of Manchester United, working in every department – not least for five years with the first team, which were the most successful in the history of the club – of course you are disappointed.
"There aren't many coaches who have spent so much time with one club as I have. You would think it would make sense to have some continuity, but the people who have made the decision think their decision makes sense as well so we will see what the future brings."
Upon the appointment of van Gaal, United also confirmed Ryan Giggs, who oversaw the club's final four games of last season following Moyes' dismissal, will be his assistant manager.
Van Gaal has also enlisted the services of coaches Frans Hoek and Marcel Bout, who have worked alongside the Netherlands boss at various stages of his career.