Competition Time

We all love free stuff right? Course we do! So here is a fantastic competition that is sure to excite you.

If like us you have spent many an hour in front of LMA Manager, Championship Manager or Football Manager you will know the feeling and emotional roller coaster that comes with playing those games. Well author Chris Darwen has taken that one step further and written a diary based around his fictional manager Johnny Cooper, all based on his experience of Championship Manager. In celebration of his forthcoming second book “Johnny Cooper, Championship Manager: The Second Season Syndrome (according to Champ Man)”, he is giving people the chance to win a signed paperback of his debut ” Johnny Cooper, Championship Manager: The Story of Mansfield Town FC 99/00 (according to Championship Manager)”.

All you have to do is email; johnnycooper@chrisdarwen.com with the answer to the following question:
Who ends the 99/00 season as Johnny Coopers top scorer?
The competition ends on Friday October 3rd and the winner will be announced afterwards.

You can purchase a copy of “Johnny Coper, Championship Manager: The Story of Mansfield Town 99/00 (according to Championship. Manager) from here.
Good Luck

Ry

5 Reasons Why……. This Transfer Window was the best for a while.

Continuing our look at 5 reasons why…..
Our 5 today comes from SiRZ owner Ryan and he explains why the last transfer window was the best one for the Premier League in a long while.

1/ We had top quality players coming in

The first reason this window was better than any other was the simple fact we had quality players join the ranks of the Premier League. Di Maria, Falcao, Diego Costa, Sanchez, Mangala, Cabella & returns for Balotelli & Fabregas all go to show that despite recent claims, the Premier League is where all the top players want to ply their trade. Infact of the top 3 World Players of the Year only one hasn’t graced the League and that’s Messi, who it would take a lot to persuade him away from his beloved Barcelona.

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Diego Costa has adapted well to the Premier League.

2/ The Premier League now has the 3 most natural strikers in the game today.

It already had one in Sergio Aguero. But now with Diego Costa and Falcao joining Chelsea and. Manchester United respectively, we have the three top goal scorers who will hopefully lead their forward lines and continue to build on their own personal reputations. Certainly with Diego Costa already looking settled in front of the Chelsea creative machine he looks like he could be the missing part of their puzzle. Also with Liverpool acquiring Balotelli and Welbeck moving to Arsenal, those two will be worth keeping eyes on as they have have a natural ability to find the back of the net when played down the middle.

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Aguero carries the weight of the City fans on his shoulders in what they hope will be a title winning year.

3/ Liverpool got rid of their albatross.

Come on I did well to get three without mentioning the obvious. Luis Suarez has finally got his gnashers out of Anfield and although now FIFA got bitch slapped down by CAS they could have got a bit more for him, I think every Liverpool fan will be happy that he and the circus his actions attract has finally departed. He had some excellent solo match winning performances for Liverpool but often his actions were overshadowed by his cannibal routine, now hopefully every football fan will sit and enjoy the smooth counter attacking football Liverpool play and if not there’s still Mario who can cause us some amusement.

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Its the guy banned from football playing for his new team that was banned from signing players!

4/ Some English players got some great moves.

Micah Richards must have been fucking annoyed being at Manchester City, A product of their youth academy and once thought to be the next big defender for club and country and rightly so. He found himself marginalised and under utilised by City and despite a few injury concerns never got the game time he deserved. Now with a loan move to Fiorentina he should hopefully get a lot more time on the pitch and show City where they fucked up. Another good move was for Danny Welbeck aka Dat Guy, his desire to play and his bulldog chasing the ball mentality often meant he was played out of position at Manchester United so never lived up to the hype surrounding him. Hopefully Arsene Wenger will play him down the middle and let Dat Guy score a him 10 or so goals this year, my only concern with that is Arsenal still don’t have a guaranteed 20 goal a season scorer which the likes of Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea all posses. Elsewhere Thomas Ince made a clever move to Hull who have altered their play in the last two seasons to utilise wide men. Ashley Cole finally fucked off although unfortunately it was only to Italy, but it means we don’t have to watch him on a weekly basis unless we choose to. Frank Lampard proved he still needed to improve his bank balance to single handily keep Greggs afloat with a move first to the MLS and then to Manchester City on loan. and Manchester United finally cut their losses on “The Next Paul Scholes” Tom Cleverley and allowed him to join Villa on loan until his contract expires in the summer.

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Thomas Ince should settle right in under Steve Bruces watchful eye.

5/ Transfer Deadline Day was brilliant as always.

Jim White, Purple Dildos, Fuck Her Right In the Pussy chants, Jason Bent doing an Odemwingie, Fans turning up at other teams grounds and ‘Arry blanking an interview in the car I love he randomness of Deadline Day, roll on January!

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Evertons new signing is a massive one.

Agree or Disagree? Get in touch the normal ways on social media or commenting on the article we read them all.

Ry

How can you solve a problem with Di Maria?

Now please keep reading as the headline is meant to be a pun, but overall it holds a bigger question. Manchester United limped to a lucky draw away against Sunderland after a defeat in the opening game of the season at home to Swansea and it just seems like last seasons form is turning into the regular rather than a one off.

Watching both games United the stark truth is that the players who have played have simply lost confidence in their ability. The passing lacks zip and creativity, the defence is lacking a leader (which is something needed if van Gaal is to continue with the 5-3-2 formation he has used so far) & the midfield is not the creative hub it should be. Now with Di Maria all bit assured to be coming to Old Trafford he can certainly help with the creativity side but what else do the red half of Manchester need? I recently had a conversation with Adamdellboy and said to him at the time United were completing the paperwork for Di Maria hand Real a blank cheque and say ” we also want Varane and Xabi Alonso”. Whilst Adam said that I was dreaming those two players typify the type of players United need.
Varane is the young defensive star who seems to read the game better than players 10 years his senior, he also posses unbelievable strength and has a decent lick of pace. Whilst Xabi Alonso would provide the calming control & passing range that someone like Tom Cleverley could only dream of.

Manchester United will also have new boy Rojo available for the trip to Turf Moor as well as hopefully Di Maria they need to get a grip with this new formation and fast. Rafeal should be looking at coming back into the starting lineup fairly soon having picked up an injury in preseason and van Gaal should be looking at Ajax defender Daley Blind before the window slams shut next Monday. For me looking at the players who may be on their way out Wellbeck seems to have his card marked, Cleverley should have gone last season, Felliani will be spared this window as he is injured but must go in January, also either or maybe both Ashley Young or Antonio Valencia should leave as neither have been anywhere near the level required since their injuries and there are plenty of younger players in the reserve teams that van Gaal should have a look at.

But all that is in an ideal world and football can be anything less than ideal, van Gaal needs to get his philosophy across and also get some of the players in and out that will fit what he needs otherwise it may be a long season for Manchester United and their fans.

Agree or disagree? Let us know the usual ways.

Ry

Our Premier League Predictions

Adamdellboy

Top 4

1. Chelsea
2. Arsenal
3. Man United
4. Man City

Bottom 3

18. WBA
19. Leicester City
20. Burnley

Player to watch: Alexis Sanchez, Eden Hazard will be top stars this season. Keep an eye on Remy Cabella at Newcastle as a surprise hit.

Young player: A trio of Raheem Sterling, Jordon Ibe and Lazar Markovic would terrify teams. Looking forward to see if Suso can make an impact too. Elsewhere, can Danny Ings score at the top level?

Top scorer: Diego Costa

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Ryan Howe

Top 4

1. Chelsea
2. Manchester United
3. Arsenal
4. Manchester City

Bottom 3

18. Hull
19. Burnley
20. Leicester

Player to watch: Juan Mata. He is going to be at the hub of everything creative and will have a big bearing on Uniteds season. Or Bojan

Young Player: Ryan Bertrand. Just think this May be the season he kicks on.

Top Scorer: Romelu Lukaku

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Ross Jones

Top 4

1. Chelsea
2. Man City
3. Arsenal
4. Man United

Bottom 3

18. Burnley
19. Aston Villa
20. Leicester

Player To Watch – Eden Hazard – will be decided whether he becomes world class this season.

Young Player – Jordan Ibe – If he gets a chance could be a sprightly show like Sterling for Liverpool.

Top Scorer – Mame Diouf / Bojan Krcic – 35 goals each.

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Jade Li

Top 4

1. Chelsea
2. Man city
3. Liverpool
4. Arsenal

Bottom 3

18. Hull
19. Leicester
20. Burnley

Player to watch: Coutinho

Top scorer: Aguero

Young player: Coutinho

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Pete Walton

Top 4

1. Man City
2. Chelsea
3.  Man United
4. Liverpool

Bottom 3

18. Hull
19. Southampton
20. Leicester

Player to watch: Going to go with Mata especially under Van Gaal going to be interesting to see him develop this season.

Top Scorer: Sergio Aguero

Young player: Mangala

Mangala

 

So what do you think? Agree with us on anything? Or are we barking up the wrong tree? Let us know via our usual lines.

 

Moyes: The Postmortem

So after all the hype and fanfare surrounding David Moyes arrival at Manchester United it’s now over, ending in whispers and rumours until this morning when it was announced in a short statement.

So what can be made of the Scotsmans short tenure? Well it was a shambles from start to finish. He wasn’t even in the top 3 of successors United fans wanted when Sir Alex Ferguson announced his retirement so was always going to face an uphill task but he didn’t exactly make things easy for himself. Then in terms of his decision to go against Sir Alex’s advice to keep his back room staff and appoint his own he was also making a rod for his own back, after all the back room staff have played a big part in the success Manchester United had enjoyed in the last 20 years so to clear them all out showed naivety.

Moyes’s first transfer window was a disaster, bringing in Fellaini and not starting to trim the squad down to help mould it in his own vision. He showed no planning in his transfer activity. Manchester United have been crying out for investment for a few years in the midfield, they have been missing the midfield general who is willing to put his foot into the opposition and grab a hold of the game. Likewise the defence needed to be upgraded with 3 of the first choice back 4 out of contract in the summer, last summer would have been the perfect opportunity to bring in Garay or Thiago Silva but no movement came on this. They should have trimmed squad and the likes of Nani, Anderson, Cleverley & Fabio should have gone then. Now as we come to the end of the season no one knows if Ferdinand or Evra will be at the club next year and we know for a fact that Vidic (who would have been the only one of the 3 I would have retained as a member of the playing staff) is off to Inter.

Moyes’s tactics as well were sometimes baffling and you sometimes got the feeling he didn’t know who the best team to put out or where to play them. In what turned out to be his last game in charge against Everton it showed all sorts of issues that have been present all year. Yes United had a lot of possession but with no penetration what so ever, it’s no wonder Rooney was dropping further and further for a touch of the ball because there was nothing coming to him. His substitutions were predictable and forced after he picked the wrong team to play against an Everton team who must have eyes on United’s Champions League place. Other games his idea of get it wide and lump it in to the box early showed a real lack of ideas, with the likes of Mata, Rooney, van Persie, Kagawa & Januzaj on the pitch in any combination there is more than enough talent to carve teams open but they just didn’t ever play to those strengths.

Now we look back and say Moyes always was going on about this being a transitional season but maybe with the right appointment maybe he will proved to be right,but just without him at the helm. You now have to look at the potential people to come in and see what quality of players they can bring into the club.
We have no sympathy for him however as he always looked out of his depth in the Old Trafford hot seat and never seemed to resolve some of the problems that were left by Sir Alex and his ageing squad, as for his future there’s a noises that he may reappear at Spurs or Newcastle and we wish him all the best.

Ry

How to change football for the better.

We all often sit around and offer opinions on how to make football better and here is one we would like to see happen. Lets stop transfers for players under 21. Now we can understand any of you scoffing at the prospect but consider this, how many players under 21 can you say are worth the transfer fees you see banded about for them?

Take for example Luke Shaw of Southampton, now if you were to believe the rumors he is valued at around £30m. £30m for a player who is only just past 50 games for his club and one full England cap is far too much, we can understand Southampton placing that value on his head to try and ward off potential suitors but it shouldn’t be an issue. Southampton are no longer in the position they were with Walcott, Bale or Oxlaide-Chamberlian where they have to sell as they aren’t in the Premiership or in financial difficulty they should simply say he is not for sale full stop.

Daniel Sturridge is another example of youngsters moving about when they are too young, although he himself must take some blame for this one. Sturridge started his career at Manchester City but had his head turned by the money that was on offer from the up and coming billionaire plaything that was Chelsea and allowed his contract to expire. Once at Chelsea his career floundered, he was rarely used as an out and out striker, instead coming on as a wide player where his speed was a great attribute. We are glad he is now showing his true skill and attacking quality now at Liverpool where he has to be in line for featuring in Teams of the Year.

There is also the argument that a player should show a degree of loyalty, after all a young player has been a product of teams youth development system and should show thanks by helping the team to the best of his ability. After all if the player is truly good enough he will still be able to command a big enough fee when he turns 21, thereby giving something back to the club on two levels. We look at some of the situations and tribunals you see (no doubt there will be one this year with Thomas Ince) and clubs rarely get much above £3m and you feel sorry for them as they are losing someone who is probably a star turn for their team. Sometimes as well the players don’t get the benefit either, like we mentioned Sturridge is and example of this, as is Nick Powell, Willfried Zaha and Glenn Johnson (who was Roman Abramovich’s first signing when he came to Chelsea) his progress was majorly held back by that move at 18 and didn’t flourish until he went to Portsmouth and then to Liverpool. We just hope the likes of Shaw & Will Hughes see sense and give something back to the clubs who have shown faith in them.

 

Ryan

David Moyes – Stuck between a rock & a hard place.

” I’d also like to remind you that we’ve had bad times here. The club stood by me, all my staff stood by me, the players stood by me. So your job now is to stand by our new manager, that is important”

The words above were said by Sir Alex Ferguson on his last home match in his long and illustrious career. And after reading our Twitter timeline in the last few days many a Manchester United fan would do well to remember them and get behind the man Sir Alex chose as his replacement David Moyes.

In his first 6 months in charge of Manchester United, Moyes has had a few highs but in the eyes of most fans more downs, in all fairness to him though he was always in a slightly losing battle unless he came into the club and announced he was signing Messi & Ronaldo in exchange for Tom Cleverley and Anderson. Also let’s not forget he is also working under a Chief Executive who is new to the club as well and eager to make a good impression.

So after defeats to Spurs, Sunderland & the early exit from the FA Cup at the hands of Swansea what could Moyes do to turn it around?

    Squad

      The current squad is the same squad which won the league last year so is it a case of them not performing well, losing their edge or poor selection by the manager?
      When you look at the squad you look at some of the players who are backup players and you have to think that some of them are not good enough. Anderson, Fabio & Nani all spring to mind as “dead weight.” it’s disappointing in the case of Fabio who when you look at the progress made by his brother Rafael should have been looking to kick on although it’s worth noting Fabio couldn’t force his way into the QPR team that was relegated last season. Then there is the likes of Cleverley, Valencia & Young all of whom feature regularly in the Manchester United line up but never impact the game as much as their talent dictates, Moyes needs to be tough with them and say “shape up or ship out”

      There are a few fringe players who would also benefit from a bit more game time, the likes of Büttner who is a left back with a decent amount of pace and a ferocious shot on him. With Evra advancing in years and also rumblings of him wanting to return to his native France for me Büttner would be a more than capable replacement. Jesse Lingard is just back from a lightning loan spell in the Midlands and has staked a claim for the matchday squads, indeed he was an unused substitute in the home victory against Swansea this past weekend and hopefully he gets a look in because as Birmingham City fans will tell you he makes daring late runs in to the box and finds space. Nick Powell is currently out on loan and is another who is getting rave reviews, with talk of Moyes recalling him to send him back out on loan to a Premier League team it seems silly, let’s see if the lad is Old Trafford material, same with Zaha. If someone asked me who would be my future a United midfield would be at the moment I would say Zaha,Powell, Lingard & Januzaj.

        Transfers

          There has been talk of a “£200m war chest” but I can’t see Moyes spending all that in January, especially with the potential risks involving January transfers taking a while to bed in. A lot of the talk is centred around this apparent gaping hole in the center of Manchester United’s defence and whilst the first choice of Vidic & Ferdinand may be creaking a bit and in the formers case rumours of him wanting him to leave the club, there is more than enough decent cover already contained within in the 25 man squad with the likes of Evans, Smalling, Jones & Michael Keane all possessing great talent and potential.

          An area United may look to strengthen this window is the forwards, with Rooney & van Persie having an injury hit season and also murmurs of them eyeing the exit it may be time for United to bite the bullet and hit Diego Costas rumoured £32m release clause and get him in tone squad, yes he wouldn’t be eligible for UCL but United have to concentrate on their league campaign to make sure they are in the competition again next season. Another forward they could move for would be Jeremy Menez of PSG, out of contract in the summer he is a player who they would save on the transfer fee so could afford to offer him a bit more. Menez is a great player to tuck in behind the main striker owing to his reading of the game and overall movement and if Rooney or RVP do move on he could help Hernandez or Welbeck really kick on.

          Another area they realistically need to strengthen is the holding midfield role. The holding midfielder should provide you with a bit of meat in the tackle and also cover for the defence so in that respect Phil Jones would be your ideal man but with him constantly being switched from one position to another he isn’t getting the time to really master any. Arturo Vidal has been linked to United and would be a great addition to the squad, a midfielder in the same mould as Paul Scholes with a never ending reserve of energy and a ferocious and fiery temperament he may provide the engine room that United need. Another midfielder United could look at bringing in is Real Madrids Nuri Sahin. He didn’t really show his true potential when he was loaned to Liverpool last year although that may have been down to Rodgers playing him in a more attacking role than he played in his time at Dortmund, he also doesn’t seem to have settled in too well at Madrid where he has been sent out on loan from for nearly two seasons after some understated performances for them so he may be available for around £10m. Jonathon Dos Santos may be a purchase with one eye on the future, the Mexican seems to have fallen back down the pecking order at Barcelona despite some impressive performances at he start of the season.

          Fantasy purchases for me come in the form of Reus, Gündoğan and Bojan Krkic but to move for any of those in this window seems to run a risk of not giving the players enough time to settle and expecting them to hit the ground running which sometimes they don’t and it ruins their hype and the fans soon turn against them. Either way it seems any business will be done late on the window again but United fans may be hoping that it doesn’t turn into another Felliani.

          Give us your views in the usual way. By commenting on this or shouting at us on Twitter & Facebook

          Ryan

David de Gea: Dodgy to Dependable.

Spaniard David de Gea has taken a lot of abuse from English football fans in his short time at Manchester United but is he slowly winning people round?

When he first joined Manchester United in June of 2011 he was much hyped as his task was to replace the retiring Edwin van der Sar, he was also not helped by his price tag (rumored to be close to £18 million) but with youth on his side United fans looked at it as a more future squad rebuilding by then manager Sir Alex Ferguson. In his first few games for United he made a few errors that most connected to the club put down as nerves, however fans of other teams decided thet had seen enough of the young Spanish keeper to label him as a dodgy gaff prone keeper (Although name me another team who hasn’t had one). He also had a few issues off the field including a penchant for a certain brand of doughnuts that landed him in trouble. What is often forgotten about his first season at Manchester United is the fact he finished the season with the highest saves to shot ratio in the league with 78% and also some terrific saves he made in the game against Chelsea & Athletic Bilbao  at Old Trafford.

Last season he continued to grow and put in some game winning performances but still the errors creeped in and he was dropped by Ferguson for a few games to be placed by Anders Lindegaard  but instead sulking de Gea knuckled down and regained his place and kept it thanks to some more impressive performances. He also found his way into the PFA’s Player of the Year team and ended it with a league winners medal. So far this season de Gea has been a shining light in a slow start for United under new manager David Moyes. In the last two games he has made some great saves that have been the difference between one point and three, indeed his save against Sunderland earned him the highest praise for a Manchester United keeper which is a compliment from legend Peter Schmeichel who called it “one of the best saves in Premier League history” .

So what is is about de Gea that people like to jump on? Well as we have said he is prone to the odd mistake, as is any keeper and its unfair to judge him on his errors but not praise his faults. Other point out his fondness for using is feet but surely the keepers job is to keep the ball from going in with whatever he can? The other criticism levveled at him is that he doesnt command box very well and is reluctant to come and claim the ball. Spanish keepers have always had the reputation for letting the defenders win the aerial battles and de Gea’s reactions have to be some of the best in the league. He also has a great sense of positioning and is alive to balls over the top of his defence coming to mop up and clear the danger. Another aspect of de Gea’s game that is overlooked is his quality in distributing the ball, he can easily ping passes half the field into his wingers feet if need be to start a quick counter.

So is de Gea really a bad keeper. vote below and let us know your thoughts?

 

Ry

The Manchester Derby: Analysing Manchester United’s errors.

We are just a few short days after Manchester United’s methodical demolition by local rivals Manchester City, so where did it all go wrong for David Moyes and his men? We look at a few key pointers we feel they lost on.

    RVPs Absence

It seems RVP had been struggling for a few days with the injury, yet Moyes still chose to play him against Leverkusen when surely Hernandez or Welbeck could have done the job? It’s a sign that Moyes was so desperate to win his United European debut that he gambled with the Dutch strikers fitness and ultimately lost. Just how much of a difference he would have made to Sundays result we shall never know but there is no doubt that when the City team saw the tea sheet minus RVP it would have given them a massive psychological boost as he was so instrumental in the same fixture last season.

    United’s Overall Team Selection

With van Persie out United needed someone to give them an added goal threat, a situation made for the likes of Kagawa or Hernandez but for some reason Moyes decided to play Ashley Young. Now I know a lot of you may be saying surely it was Welbeck that could have been the replacement? But Welbeck is more than capable at playing out wide allowing for Hernandez, Rooney or Kagawa to play in the number 10 role. Also the fact that once again Zaha and Januzaj are nowhere near the squad has to be a worrying factor especially as they both had great pre seasons with the club and had the fans looking forward to seeing them push on

    United Failure to Capitalise on the games opening 25 minutes

The first 20 minutes of the derby were open and frenetic, you have to think that had United had scored in those opening exchanges it would have put City on the back foot for the rest of the game. As it was United failed to score and once the game settled to a slower pace, the flaws that seem to be in the squad this year surfaced.

    Ashley Young

Ashley Young has been dire in a United shirt and Sundays performance was one of his worst. He came to United with a reputation of a goal scoring winger whose pace and finishing could trouble any defence in the world, currently he is better known for diving. On Sunday he kept throwing high balls into the box aiming at one person who was marked by 2 defenders, or as the case a few times aimlessly launching it into the 18 yard box under the keepers nose. He needs to start attacking the wings more, driving to the byeline and firing crosses across the line between the 6 yard box & penalty spot.

    David Moyes substitution choice

“So the score is 3 – 0 to our local rivals at their own ground, I have a creative midfielder who has won many honours in his home country and a proven goalscorer who may have given United a boost. Which one shall I bring on? I know TOM CLEVERLEY!” This must have been David Moyes’s mind during the game. We are by no means talking Tom Cleverley down as he has come on leaps and bounds as player in the last few years but he was the wrong player in this situation.

There were some positives in the defeat from a Manchester United point of view? Chris Smalling had a good game and worked tirelessly down the right flank to get up and support Valencia and also Fellaini grew into the game when they went to a 3 man midfield and is slowly winning over the fans who said he wasn’t the right man for the club. Rooney looks to be enjoying his football at the minute and took his free kick goal well.

It’s too early judge Moyes on his performance as United boss just yet but this hard start to the season wouldn’t have helped him to silence the critics and we think he may need to get a handle on this squad and the issues he seemingly has with some players.

The transfer window; how did Man United get it so wrong?

The 8th of May 2013, for Manchester United and it’s fans was the day that marked the end of an epic era. One of, if not the greatest manager of all, called time on his illustrious reign and as a result ushered in a new start under David Moyes. This huge change left United fans thinking how would their team perform on the pitch and at this stage of the season it is far too early to judge. However, just as important was how United would perform off the pitch, in the transfer market. To their rivals, United’s failure to land target after target proved to be a great source of amusement.

What the transfer deadline gives you is a clear indication of the badly run football clubs

Gary Neville

Manchester United are a global powerhouse financially, with enough clout to buy and sell most teams in the English game. Although the reign of their American owners the Glazers has divided many fans, United have continued to grow on and off the field. With a new manager eager to prove himself to fans accustomed to success, it was vital that Moyes brought in the players that he felt would smooth the transitional period that was bound to exist. The transfer window has now closed and Moyes was only able to land one of his many targets, ironically pinching Marouane Fellaini from his previous club Everton, for a fee higher than the release clause that Moyes himself helped insert!!!! You only had to go on Twitter for a few minutes on Deadline Day to see the anger this caused amongst United fans with the finger being pointed at various individuals. It probably didn’t help they were beaten by their deadliest rivals Liverpool a short time earlier. For the first time in a long while, United fans were the brunt of the jokes. But why did this happen to such a professionally run and ruthlessly ambitious club?

Those that don’t follow United closely may not have been aware of the summer departure of a man called David Gill, United’s Chief Executive. Ferguson and Gill formed a crucial partnership spanning the last decade and worked together closely in improving the United squad. Sir Alex identified his targets and Gill landed them, players such as Ronaldo, Rooney, Vidic and RVP who all became world class players. Gill was the footballing equivalent of the Terminator and proved himself a vital component of the United juggernaut.

Gill was not always a popular figure amongst fans and was a target of personal abuse during the supporter led ‘Green and Gold’ campaign in 09/10, when fans attempted to drive out the Glazers. He survived this and went on to become Fergie’s closest ally, his impending departure possibly being a contributing factor to the manager’s own retirement. It was perhaps just as crucial deciding Gill’s successor as it was in finding a new manager.

That man was Edward Woodward, who at 40 was promoted from Executive Vice Chairman to work alongside David Moyes. His previous track record was superb, driving commercial expansion to never before reached levels and was described as a commercial genius, but was he the right man for the job?

As a pair, it is my belief that Moyes and Woodward lacked the necessary experience to land their key targets. Pursuits for Fabregas, Thiago, Baines and Herrera amongst others proved fruitless, whilst United fans have never forgiven Woodward for his infamous departure from the preseason tour to conclude ‘urgent transfer business’. We’ve never found out what that was!!!! The worry is that Woodward is a ‘money man’, someone who is eager to count the pennies coming in and runs the risk of being a Glazer lapdog. His inability to pull the trigger may have been an indication that he just didn’t have the stones. I can only imagine it’s easier to seal a deal for money coming in than it is for money going out.

David Moyes has also come in for criticism, mostly from rival fans wanting to score points over United supporters. In fairness, how much experience of major transfer deals did he have whilst at Everton? In fact the only major star who arrived at Goodison in recent years came in the shape of Hollywood celebrity fan, Sylvester Stallone. Or was it a case that he was afraid to challenge those above him so early into his new job? In any case, come January he will need to be better prepared.

For me, the blame has to lie mainly with Woodward as he is seemingly responsible for sealing the deals and as I previously mentioned, many United fans have called for his head and for David Gill to return. I firmly believe that in the next two windows, United will have a point to prove and they will flex their muscles a little more appropriately. That will be the chance for Moyes and Woodward to prove they are more like Stallone and Schwarzenegger than they are Laurel and Hardy. Never before have United fans been as desperate for instant success, uncertainty is probably a feeling that many have never experienced before. It’s certainly not time to hit the panic button, yet………

@adamdellboy