There is one title that David Moyes has won already and it is not even half way into his first season at Old Trafford. The honour however is a rather dubious one unfortunately for the Manchester United manager. Moyes has managed to be the big loser of the transfer window, seeing only two players arrive and a whole heap of embarrassment placed on the club.
In true irony that only football can provide, many were retweeting Gary Neville, die hard United fan and legend turned pundit who noted: “What the transfer deadline gives you is a clear indication of which are the badly run football clubs!”
Should we judge United on the events of not just deadline day but the whole window, then according to Neville himself they are a badly run club. Whilst we would not go quite that far, the Red Devils certainly did not impress this summer.
Yes, they managed to keep Wayne Rooney, but in reality that was more down to the lack of clubs interested in the forward, his hesitance to move abroad (and Coleen’s own reluctance to let him lose in a foreign country) and the fans show of support during the game against Chelsea. Keeping what Moyes deemed to be his second choice forward is not exactly what fans of the Champions have come to expect to be the highlight of their summer, and neither is the constant failure to land any of the targets they are linked with.
Whilst not rejected quite as many times as Arsene Wenger this summer, Moyes certainly made a hash of deadline day and trying to save face by bringing in left back Fabio Coentrao on loan was a move that spectacularly blew up in his face -not to mention probably unsettled Patrice Evra that little bit more after a summer chasing after Leighton Baines. The move officially failed due to the ‘paperwork’ not being submitted on time – but in reality was because Real Madrid panicked at seeing their move for Sequeira fall through after Benfica beat them to the defender.
Coentrao falling through at the last minute is one thing, and at the end of the day, fans understand that deals are often on a knife edge and can fail on the smallest of technicalities, especially at such a late hour. That can be overlooked and forgiven. The debacle surrounding Ander Herrera however cannot.
Having three ‘impostors’ manage to pass themselves off as officials from the club and enter into negotiations for a player on deadline day is mind blowing at best, but then to claim that it did not matter because the club were never willing to pay the release clause for the player anyway is adding fuel to the fire.
Last minute fails for players such as Real Madrid midfielder Sami Khedira and allegedly Galatasaray playmaker Wesley Sneijder also make Moyes look quite frankly like he has little clue of how to operate – something we know to be untrue from his time at Everton, so what is the issue in landing these players? Was the money not there in terms of both wages and the initial transfer fees or do players simply not want to make the switch to Old Trafford now Fergie is gone?
It was not all doom and gloom for Moyes however, as the former Toffees manager brought in former star man Maroune Fellaini, paying more than the original release clause in the Belgium international’s contract which could have been triggered if had he moved for the player earlier in the summer, eventually Moyes shelled out close to £28 million for Fellaini.
Young right back Saidy Janko also joined the club, but was promptly released once again on loan, and Moyes will be hoping the 17 year old is one for the future.
The nagging factor that both fans and the media cannot seem to get past after the transfer window seems to be the fact that this summer, Mesut Ozil, Javier Pastore, Angel Di Maria and Juan Mata were thought to be available, so why did Moyes wait until the very last minute to move for Fellaini, paying more than he would have had to weeks earlier, and attempting last ditch moves for others?
United are crying out for a player like Ozil, yet will have to watch the magnificent German play his trade at the Emirates for the next couple of seasons at least. Given the God awful service provided for forward Robin Van Persie in the last couple of games, the Dutchman would have given his right leg – or more accurately one of their current midfielder’s to net Ozil. Fellaini is by no means a bad buy, and will get the goals from midfield that United are in dire need of – but given the strength of their rivals, will one buy be enough? Only if United come very, very good after Christmas one suspects.
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