Nemanja Vidic has revealed just how hard his final season at Manchester United was, with players under constant scrutiny and arguing with each other, as the team that had lifted the Premier League in May 2013 all of a sudden lost its way and found itself trapped in a downward spiral which only ended with the last game of the season last Sunday.
The 1-1 draw at Southampton was Vidic’s last ever game for the club and, as he prepares to head over to Inter Milan for a new chapter in his career, Vidic has lift the lid on what life has been like at Old Trafford for the last 10 months, as under David Moyes the club plummeted into previously unseen troubles.
In a plot almost reminiscent of that rather poor movie, ‘Freaky Friday’, the season which we’ve just rejoiced at seeing the back of has seen a switch in fortunes for ourselves and Liverpool.
It was unthinkable at the end of the 2012/13 campaign that a year on we would find ourselves languishing in seventh place, whilst our fiercest rivals would be experiencing the heady heights of the top end of the Premier League.
After 10 seemingly endless months, when disappointment and dire football became as common as success and attacking endeavour had been for the best of the last 26 years, we finally waved goodbye to the 2013-14 season, not in style but after a dull 1-1 draw.
Here’s what we’ve learnt from United’s last outing of a dismal campaign.
Patrice Evra is expected to make his final appearance for Manchester United today, as the Reds travel to Southampton for their last game of the season, with the 32-year-old seemingly poised to join Nemanja Vidic at Inter Milan next season.
Evra’s contract runs out at the end of the season and while he’s been a virtually ever present figure this season, David Moyes’ long and ultimately fruitless pursuit of Leighton Baines had made clear that the Frenchman was no longer going to be the club’s first choice left-back, after eight seasons at Old Trafford.
At long, long, last we’ve finally reached the end. Sunday’s trip to the South Coast brings the curtain down on this seemingly endless, utterly shambolic, largely uninspiring campaign meaning we can all spend the next few months dreaming of returning to success, while our heads spin at the number of players United are linked with in the press.
In the last quarter of a century never has there been a season Reds are so desperate to see the back of such as the current one, which has tested our collective resolve and patience in a whole new way from what we had been used to for over two decades.
Rio Ferdinand has admitted his future remains unsure and has expressed his concern at United’s decision to allow Nemanja Vidic to join Inter Milan on a free transfer this summer. Vidic, who alongside Rio formed arguably the best centre-back pairing in the Premier League over the last decade, played his final game at Old Trafford on Tuesday.
Taking a break from selling “5″ caps and trying to convey a message by posting links to songs on Twitter, Ferdinand has said that the decision to allow Vidic to leave could backfire, just as Sir Alex found out himself when he sold Jaap Stam to Lazio.
Louis Van Gaal went some way to dispel doubts over his future by publicly admitting that he wants to manage Manchester United, describing the Reds as “the biggest club in the world”. The Dutchman is largely thought to be the overwhelming favourite in the race to succeed David Moyes at Old Trafford and could be announced next week.
Ryan Giggs is expected to remain at Old Trafford as Van Gaal’s assistant manager, after the Dutchman has reportedly expressed his interest in keeping Giggsy on his coaching staff. Even though the Holland manager hasn’t formally been appointed, yesterday he gave the biggest sign yet that he will in fact replace Moyes in the Old Trafford dugout after the World Cup.
United’s last home game of this shambolic season offered, at long last, something to look forward to after 10 largely disappointing months, in which the highs have been few and far between. The 3-1 win against Hull was also the chance to wave goodbye to Nemanja Vidic and to welcome some new faces on the big stage.
Here’s five things we’ve learnt last night…