Well, the time has finally come.
Something that seemed so improbable less than a year ago, has come true.
Just 10 months into his six-year contract as manager of Manchester United Football Club, David Moyes has “resigned,” or in football parlance – been sacked, heaving the club into further turmoil after what has been already been a mercilessly long season.
Whether you choose to lay blame at Sir Alex Ferguson’s feet for bequeathing his handpicked successor an aging team with a weak spine in central defense and midfield, or with new Chairman Ed Woodward for failing to make any squad improvements during the disastrous summer transfer window (see: Fellaini, Marouane), or quite simply with the squad itself for not performing at a level befitting of Manchester United’s impeccably high standards, this team was inarguably going nowhere under the direction of David Moyes.
The results this season are staggering; Ten defeats since January, embarrassing home losses to Manchester City and Liverpool, and no Champion’s League football for the first time since before Adnan Januzaj was born, all offer a snapshot of the type of disaster Moyes’ tenure at Old Trafford has been. And to make matters worse, Liverpool seem poised to win the league, while Moyes’ successor at Goodison Park, Roberto Martinez, has made Everton into a side genuinely capable of challenging for a top-four spot and playing razor sharp, aggressive, intelligent football on a weekly basis. From his interactions with squad players, to his puzzling comments after matches such as the Everton debacle on Sunday, David Moyes just could not handle the pressure of replacing one of the greatest managers in the history of sport at a club with ambitions such as those of Manchester United.
Some will, and already have, blamed the United brass for firing Moyes with just a few matches left to play. But such is life in the world of football these days, and although I genuinely feel sorry for Moyes, Manchester United needs all the time it can get to appoint a new manager and begin revamping its squad during a summer transfer period that will be compressed due to the World Cup.
The reality is that this team is not as poor as its record suggests and a new manager such as Louis Van Gaal, as recent reports are indicating, would be fully capable of restoring Manchester United to its place in the upper echelon of world soccer. Furthermore, reports suggest that whomever the new manager may be, he’ll have a large transfer budget to deal with, making the acquisition of positions such as a new left back, center midfielder, and winger eminently feasible in one transfer period.
Ultimately, though United currently sit 7th in the Barclays Premier League and will not be playing Champions League football next season, one poor campaign does not diminish the allure of Old Trafford and what it means to pull on a shirt with the Red Devil on it. Manchester United will be back, and the English Premier League will be all the better for it.