The most successful manager in the history of English football has left. He’s replaced by a manager that has never won a major trophy. One of the team’s star players wants to leave and appears to be causing disruption at the club. Suddenly where the team looked strong, it looks weak. Many pundits predicting the champions for this season are placing other rivals above them despite the fact that they’re current champions – won at a canter. It seemed like a recipe for a rapid decline. Football however isn’t like that.
Against Swansea, David Moyes had the first real opportunity to show that all was hale and hearty at Old Trafford. It was a chance that he grasped in full measure. It only took half an hour or so for the reds to impose themselves on a Swansea team that had been predicted to achieve great things this season. Once Dutch goal machine Robin van Persie had shown that he remains the ace marksman that he was last season, confidence seeped through the united team and it was very much a case of how many the champions would win by.
In the end, a three goal margin and top spot in the nascent Premier league table was just reward for a robust performance that was full of menace at the sharp end of the game. Even the introduction of the recalcitrant Rooney for the final thirty minutes or so proved to be astute. Creating two goals and displaying the usual vigour of his performance, Rooney still looked a player apart from his teammates but that in no way diminished his contribution to the cause.
This Manchester United team is still very much the team that Fergie built, and Moyes is not naïve enough to jump in and tear up the successful blueprint just to make his mark. There’ll be many a bookie reviewing their odds for the champions retaining their title. It shouldn’t be any surprise if the arms raising the trophy next May are donned in United red.