Under Sir Alex Ferguson, there was no doubt that he was in control, cross him and you’re out. Such as Roy Keane criticising the players openly or the press conferences where some reporters would be picked out and taught who is in control.
However, under Moyes he has inherited a squad full of egos and had a manager they look up to. Compared to Everton where players were brought in following his philosophy. He has most likely been taking advice from the more experienced players, as they are the ones in the know having been at Manchester United for so long. The players currently have the upper hand.
We have seen some positives with how he’s dealt with Wayne Rooney, in keeping him for a little longer to be able to try and attempt him into a new contract. But as the player still hasn’t confirmed his future and the likes of Chelsea and Arsenal in desperate mood to find a striker, Rooney is only going to be again the prize fish to catch in the upcoming window.
To add to the pressure, we’ve seen the experienced players question the manager. Rio Ferdinand openly expressed his worries to BT Sport, in the way team selection is handled.
“This manager’s a bit different in that he doesn’t name the team beforehand” He also added “It’s hard...it’s hard to do that mentally because you spend a lot of nervous energy thinking ‘Am I playing?’ Or ‘Am I not playing?’ and you’re just going round in circles in your head and turning into a madman.”
And Johnny Evans said after the loss to Newcastle on Saturday that the players have lost confidence and struggled to conjure up a fight back. This continues to show the unrest within the team which is portrayed in some of the performances.
Also this week we’ve heard some rumours on Robin Van Persie handing in a transfer request. He has looked largely a frustrated figure this season and having had several injuries so early on, possibly down to the training methods constructed under Moyes. Which have been heavily criticised by Dutch fitness specialist, Raymond Verheijen, stating the coaches at United to be “Dinosaurs”.
If the rumours are true, this could be disastrous for Moyes and Manchester United as they could be left open to losing two of their key players and having had one humiliating transfer window already, Manchester United might not only have to worry about buying the right players but also keeping the proven winners, who are next to irreplaceable.
David Moyes and United supporters know the manager needs time to imprint himself, as even for Ferguson, this type of control wasn’t instant; it’s something that is learnt through experience. But he will still have to overcome some massive hurdles to become the Manchester United manager. He’s still on the learning curve and the struggles don’t look like letting up.