The problems shining at Old Trafford
By Owen McMahon
After yet another defeat at Old Trafford on Sunday that watched Manchester United crash out of the FA Cup competition to a 2-1 defeat by Swansea, the problems lingering at Old Trafford are quickly becoming an outstanding problem. But, who is to blame?
It's very hard and unfair to pinpoint an individual for the failure of a club. Often the scapegoat will be the manager, the owner, or a single player, etc - however at Manchester United, it's a variety of factors.
Many fans are quick to jump on the 'Moyes Out' bandwagon, blaming David for the significant lapse in quality at the theatre of dreams, however is that just the easy thing to do?
Yes, Moyes has made a few mistakes at the club since joining, for example, the transfer window. The summer window was horrific for Manchester United, which didn't go unnoticed by the public.
After attempting a series of wild and optimistic transfer bids, it quickly became an issue that players did not want to join the club, so it appeared. Not that it is his fault personally - can Moyes really persuade players to join his club like Ferguson could? I don't think so.
He never really came out and said, 'Right - this is the list of players I will be going for.' Come the end of the window, it had been rumoured that the Red Devils had bid for around eight different players, none which had been successful.
I think Moyes could have made his targets much more obvious and gone all out for them, rather than trying to get every available player he could. Something that will be learnt for January, I hope.
The Fellaini signing. There's no one else to blame for this really other than Moyes. It's obvious that he wanted the Belgian to be a Manchester United player, but did he really put much thought into it? Twenty-eight million pounds for a player who has offered near to nothing since his arrival in Manchester, was to say the least, a panic buy. None of that this month, Moyes.
Finally, the decision to wipe out the entire backroom staff for his own. Wrong decision. Even advised by Sir Alex himself, Moyes went against this and cleaned out the whole staff, bringing his guys over from Everton. This completely took away any sense of Manchester United within the ranks, completely changing the whole feel of the club. However, I think it's a matter of time before Moyes becomes completely comfortable with the players at his disposal and works out who should play where and in which games. Patience.
Quite a distinct problem; Manchester United's squad does not compete with the likes of Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal. There's no arguing it - it doesn't.
In some areas (attack, goalkeeper) they are strong, but the midfield and majority of the defence let the rest down. Linking to the factors of the previous transfer window, signings MUST be done in January if United want to challenge for a top four position, otherwise they can kiss goodbye to a Champions League spot next season.
Another questionable factor would be whether or not the players are giving 100 percent under the new man. It's no secret that Ferguson got the best out of the Manchester United players and quite frankly they responded.
This season, on the other hand, the situation seems to be different. There is something not quite right about a league winning side standing seventh in the league, and I don't think all the blame can be placed on those in power at the club. In my opinion, a top class signing from Moyes in January will lift the spirits of the whole club - from the fans to the players - and the journey will seem a whole lot smoother.
Chief Executive and the Board
Again, the transfer window. The Herrera saga. What a mess up that was. The new chief executive Ed Woodward failed to sign Ander Herrera from Athletic Bilbao because he was unfamiliar with the tax laws in Spain, and couldn't pay off the release clause. Not to forget the three imposters that pretended to be Manchester United asssociates. Why wasn't this intercepted? The only mistake on their behalf as of yet, but one that must be put right before any other dealings in the transfer window.
A very short one, as I don't see how the Glazers can take much blame for the failings of the club. People's argument is - they aren't supplying the club with any money. Well, am I correct in saying we bid £40million for Cesc Fabregas, that would have been a record signing for Manchester United. As a club, we have never been one to spend massive amounts on new signings. My only criticism will be that, in the dilemma we currently face, maybe it's time to break the bank.
You have to question the impact on the removal of the manager and the staff on the club as a whole. It affected the fans, the players, and I think we're seeing that on the pitch, and between the fans.
Again, you can't blame Sir Alex for leaving, he left at a good time, after serving a numerous amount of years and bringing incredible success to the club. However, there is no doubt the decision has impacted the club. Everybody knew it was a time for a new era, a change in management, methods etc, but I don't think people quite knew how much would change.
Noticeably, a few characteristics that made Manchester United the club that they are seem to be missing. That winning mentality, that no matter what the score, no matter how previous results had gone, Manchester United could win anything. Non-existent.
Fans are not confident, they don't look like coming back when going down to an opposing team, even the famous comebacks haven't made much appearance this season. A problem that should sort itself out with a spark, such as a new signing, trophy etc.
It is my personal belief that the fans are not helping David Moyes or the team whatsoever. It is fair to give critcism, but getting on the managers back every defeat is unfair. Inflicting more pressure on a team that already has heaps of pressure laid onto them is not healthy. Even the joke #MoyesOut campaigns on social media, it just doesn't help the situation that United are currently in. Finally, I think the fans need to admit something is wrong, but stick by the club, the manager and the players. However, staying United is the way forward. Success will come from patience, everyone knows Manchester United won't just go under the radar without a fight, it's inevitable.
Just something for Manchester United fans to keep in their heads...
Sir Alex Ferguson: "I'd also like to remind you that when we had bad times here, the club stood by me, all my staff stood by me, the players stood by me. Your job now is to stand by our new manager. That is important."