4 responses

  1. Julian
    January 28, 2016

    All very well but the disenchantment is growing. It’s not good for the team, the club, the fans, the sponsors and any other connected parties that their manager is booed off the pitch after every home game. The team doesn’t really know how to win anymore at OT which was once a fortress. Admittedly the Glazers are quite prepared to take no notice of what the fans want but this increasing animosity must tell at some stage. Already Adidas have made disparaging comments. What happens if United do not qualify for the ECL with the consequent loss of income? The Glazers may like the structure etc but they won’t like it one bit if the bottom line is seriously affected.

    Unless the Glazers are totally out of touch, I suggest treating this article with a fair degree of scepticism. In reality they are probably very concerned but will probably take guidance from Ed (for now that is).

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  2. colver
    January 30, 2016

    Dutch journalist so go figure. A better interpretation of Van Gaal’s career is that he has a short shelf life because players get fed up with all the demands that come with his philosophy and training methods and stop performing.

    Clearly the owners were pretty happy until December because Van Gaal achieved his remit in the first season, and looked like sustaining a title challenge until December when things fell apart. The goodwill he built up earned him more patience than was afforded to Moyes. There had been progress so the hope was we had just hit a bad patch of form and would come through it. Also remember it is only January. Even with Moyes we only pulled the trigger once it was clear we werent going to qualify for the Champions League and he’d lost the dressing room. And results have improved a bit since December with two wins a draw and a loss in the Premiership and two FA Cup wins. It looks as though the players are still doing their best whatever reservations they may have about LVG’s methods and with most of the senior players purged over the last two seasons there is no one really left to lead a player revolt. I think the viciousness of the media’s treatment of Van Gaal has probably won him some sympathy from the players. Of course if we had another losing streak of three or four games on the trot we’d end up ten points or more adrift of the top four and get overtaken by the likes of Liverpool, West Ham and Southampton and then it would probably be game over.

    But I think it is more likely results will stabilize and we’ll stay in the running for a top four finish. All this talk of a crisis is overblown. December was a horrible month and the fans turned on LVG and the media danced on his empty grave. The growing disenchantment and animosity is mostly correlated with the bad recent run of results. Like I said January was better and if we can have a good February and March we can get our season back on track. A lot of it is confidence. It isn’t LVG out there missing chances or making defensive errors. It is the players. And while we know LVG likes possession he doesn’t control every pass we make and if players are making too many safe passes some of that is likely to be simply that they aren’t confident enough to take any risks. If results pick up which they are already showing signs of doing confidence will improve, our defending will improve, we’ll create more chances and score more chances and i think everyone will be surprised how much we can improve. It is silly to write us off as early as January just because we are five points adrift off fourth place and ten points off first place with fifteen games still to play.

    End of the season I think regardless of whether we finish fourth or fifth or sixth or seventh LVG will leave by mutual consent saving face for both parties on the basis he hasn’t made progress this season despite the massive player investment. And then we can decide whether to gamble on Mourinho or Giggs or some one else.

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  3. colver
    February 1, 2016

    Well Manchester City have definitely landed Pep, Liverpool got Klopp, Bayern got Ancelotti and where on earth does that leave us? Especially as there is a good chance we will be unable to offer Champions League football to an incoming boss. Pochettino will probably prefer Champions League football with Tottenham. Allegri has a good thing at Juventus.

    Diego Simeone is probably the most attainable super coach.

    Giggs for me is too risky. If the squad was in great shape and a dead cert for a top four finish we could afford to give Giggs a few seasons to learn on the job and develop his own style. But I think his tactical naivety, lack of hands on managerial experience and lack of demonstrated skill in the transfer market could be very costly and we cannot afford to stay outside the top four for a prolonged period of time-we’d lose our best players, struggle to attract good players and it would mean Giggs would be doomed.

    Mourinho I think if we were interested we’d have signed him up already. I think our hesitation is because of all the negative PR and as a global Plc we care a lot about our brand and our public image. Falling out with the entire Chelsea squad also raises questions about his man management style especially as there were other feuds at Real Madrid. And he does have a habit of burning teams out in his desire for short term success and leaving them worse off than he found them while his record in the transfer market is pretty terrible. His modus operandi is to get an extra 10-20% out of the squad he inherits and use his tactical acumen to mould it into a winning machine but his approach stops working after a few years and he is then forced to move on to the next club.
    It is very tempting because we have assembled an expensive squad that is underperforming and if Mourinho still has some magic left in him he could probably manage to win a few trophies for us. But I think we need to build something that lasts.

    Simeone is a modern, tactically astute manager who has given Real Madrid and Barcelona a good run for their money despite vastly inferior resources, builds teams that have some real steel but also score goals and at his age he will only get better as a manager. Chelsea are interested so we have to move pretty fast but unless he really wants to live in London you’d imagine he’d prefer us

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  4. Sean the Red
    February 2, 2016

    With the victory over Derby on Friday, the pressure is temporarily off Van Gaal (well at least till tonight when we play Stoke!) despite certain sections of the media and Robbie Savage in particular who continue to pile it on(although how any one can take the views of someone with a hair style like that beggars belief!).

    The biggest problem for any new manager at Man U is to continue the success that SAF brought us. For many supporters he is the only manager they have experienced and success appeared to be assured. However, for older supporters like me who have experienced the peaks and troughs of following this great club, I guess I always expected the difficult times will come. What has surprised me is how deep and quick the malaise would be. It is not only the first team that is struggling. Our U-18 team seems to be doing poorly and a 5-1 thrashing in the Youth Cup against Chelsea would have been unthinkable, even last season. If we can’t recruit talented young players, then it does not hold good for the future. We also seem to sell potential players at U-21 level where they are now doing well. When they all play, most of Leicester’s defence are ex-United players and to rub salt in the wounds, players like Cathart and Drinkwater are scoring goals not to mention the U-21 players currently on loan.

    There seems to be two schools of management in play at present – the Dave Sexton approach (keep things tight and don’t concede goals) and the Ron Atkinson School of Management which was if it plays football and moves, sign it! Yet if we take De Gea out of the equation, our best players have been arguably Lingard and Bothwick-Jackson who cost us nothing!

    A combination of press speculation and fans’ disenchantment is for pushing Van Gaal out and replace him with Mourinho. However, is this the right choice? Mourinho was Van Gaal’s apprentice and there is no guarantee that the style of play will change. Chelsea were exciting in the first half of last season and more cautious in the second half of the season. How will Giggs fit in if Jose comes, especially if he brings in his own team in (presumably without the medics!)? It feels like a quick fix to win trophies with no long term plan to fix the recruitment of players at all levels of the club. I also feel that those in the club who know the club’s history and heritage have either been marginilised or ignored by those who don’t.

    The arrival of Guardiola appears to have increased the gloom amongst many of us. Whether United made some half hearted attempt to sign him up is uncertain but if United knew he was going to City, presumably there is a plan to counter it.

    If Van Gaal is to go why not bring in Mark Hughes back as United Manager and keep Giggs as his assistant (assuming he accepts the role). Hughes should also bring Butland and Shawcross with him. I also believe that if Van Gaal goes, then Woodward should go with him. His tenure at the club is more questionable. He may have generated big sponsorship deals but his idea of transfer targets feels like Fantasy League Football than reality. We have seen players like Delli Alli (who we had experience of playing against last season) slip through our grasp because of some insane notion that Neymar, Bale, Messi or Ronaldo will join us.

    My points of view may be and probably are completely off the mark but whatever the solution is this decline needs to be arrested soon. It feels like we are the ‘noisy neighbours’ now.

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