So, David Moyes is sacked after a mere 10 months in charge of Manchester United.
I’ve been listening to BBC Radio Five Live all morning and most people seem to support the decision. Manchester United supporters have, in the main, been scathing about the fact that their team is unlikely to finish in the top four, as is it’s divine right. The football has been boring – it’s not the way we play. And the tactics? Well!
Even worse has been ‘The Big Club’ card. Moyes might have been okay for a little club like Everton, went the mantra, but he was out of his depth at the biggest club in the world. I don’t know how more patronising some people could have been.
Apart from the spiky broadcaster Terry Christian, there was little criticism of the Glaser family whose debt fuelled purchase of the club has seen £800m spirited away to meet interest payments.
United’s decline is entirely down to David Moyes. He had to go?
This outsider suggests he did fail but not in the ways described by some.
Since the new owners came in, Manchester United are no longer big spenders and their outlay is similar to that of Stoke City. In this final season Sir Alex Ferguson created a near miracle winning the league with an ageing and declining team. And a team that had not enjoyed much in the way of spending on it.
Moyes had a shopping list of players last summer but the new CEO Ed Woodward failed to sign any of them, apart from Fellaini for a grossly inflated £27m.
The signs of decline, noticeable under Sir Alex, were writ large under Moyes and it was obvious long before today that he would not be manager for the long term.
In the most crass way possible, ‘sources close to the club’ started briefing journalists that Moyes was to be axed and these rumours were not emphatically denied by the owners. (In politics, ‘sources close to the minister’ are usually ministers themselves, so draw your own conclusions as to who these sources were.)
And now he’s gone and the airwaves are clogged up with chatter and prattle.
Moyes was a cheap option, as he had proved at Everton over a very long period of time but they didn’t give him long enough to see if he could do it at Old Trafford.
This was a sacking about money and the fear of having less of it by owners who run the club as a cash cow.
I cannot see the new manager being handed a fortune to revamp the squad but even if he was what would it prove? It certainly wouldn’t guarantee anything, that’s for sure.
So many of the fans seem not to look beyond what happens on the pitch. That’s normal at most clubs. But what happens in the boardroom does directly impact on everything that happens at the club.
And what’s happening with the board at Manchester United is why things are going wrong on the pitch.
I can understand, from personal experience, why it’s easier to just watch the football and ignore everything that goes on off the pitch but if you do that you have to accept you have less right to criticise what happens on it.