David Moyes admits that he did not expect Manchester United’s season to be this bad after Fulham’s injury-time draw at Old Trafford.
Former United coach Renee Meulensteen was back at the Theatre of Dreams for the first time since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement and delivered a performance by dismissing the Red Devils tactics as predictable.
The draw leaves United nine points behind rivals Liverpool in the race for a Champions League qualification. To add to their woes of the season, they currently sit in seventh place and are even uncertain of securing a Europa League qualification.
“It’s been a bit like that this season, but today was as bad as it gets. We dominated the game and how we didn’t win, I have no idea, but it’s goals that count. You can have as much possession as you like. We should have scored more,” Moyes said following the frustrating draw against Fulham on Sunday night.
“The players are hurting. I can see every day that they’re hurting because the results aren’t going the way they want. They are really good professionals in the way they go about their work and what I see in training makes me feel they’ll get results.”
But if the game against Fulham proved anything, it’s that the Red Devils will have to adopt a more diverse and unpredictable tactical approach if they are to stand a chance to exceed Liverpool, Everton, and Tottenham and finish fourth.
Meulensteen admits that he predicted United’s “get it wide, get it in” tactic and that’s why it was “easy to defend against” by staying “more compact and more tight in wide areas because United would cross the ball a lot.”
However, Moyes rejected the former United coach’s claim of his tactics being predictable and blamed it on the “mental softness” of his defensive lineup.
Nemanja Vidic’s decision to leave the club at the end of the season comes as a crushing blow for Moyes and the club as it comes at the same time of Rio Ferdinand anticipated retirement.
Although the dynamic duo have not been in sorts this season they are undoubtedly one of the greatest centre-back partnerships in the Premier League and in the club’s history.
Moyes insists that they have to win all games from now on as he also needs the points to advance the club’s seventh position. “We have to win all the games, so you can ask me as many times as you like. I’ll keep saying we have to win the games that are coming up.”