Valencia owner Peter Lim has insisted that his friendship with Gary Neville had nothing to do with hiring him to become manager at the Mestalla.
Neville and Singaporean businessman Lim knew each other well through their co-ownership of Northern Premier League side Salford City.
But Lim said that Neville, who arrived at the club earlier this month and has one win in his first four games, was appointed on a purely professional basis.
‘I picked Gary not because he is a good friend; Gary is a good coach, who happened to be a friend. I think that has to be very clear to everyone,’ Lim told Valencia’s official website.
‘I look at him, he has got the potential in him, I knew him for a while and his football knowledge is tremendous. He is a top pundit in the UK. I chose him because of his knowledge of football and everything that is around football.
‘I am very confident about him, it’s just the only shortfall is maybe the language. But I believe he can overcome it, because he is a very determined person.
‘More important is his experience, not only as a manager but his playing days, I think he can hold this team together.
‘I know a lot of people say “oh no, he has never been a coach,” but I do believe that he has got the ability to become a good coach.
‘He has been an assistant coach with England, and also when he was at Manchester United he was always playing a very important role as a captain. It’s common knowledge that Sir Alex Ferguson passed him a lot of training in managing players”.’