As the clock ticked past 11pm on deadline day, Manchester United looked like they'd had a disaster.
A deal for Spanish midfielder Ander Herrera had been abandoned, a late bid for Real Madrid's Sami Khedira rejected and Marouane Fellaini appeared to be caught in a type of purgatory between Old Trafford and Goodison Park.
As the end neared, they started to resemble a drunk trying to pull at closing time.
It wasn't until after the official deadline that news began to filter through that Fellaini was a United player and Moyes had made his first signing in his new job.
The sweetener for supporters was a proposed season-long loan deal for Madrid's Portugal full-back Fabio Coentrao, although that remained unconfirmed by either club well past midnight.
But the new faces won't hide the fact that United's transfer dealings this summer have, at times, descended into farce. It's not the way they usually do these things.
Moyes has been embarrassed by his public, and ultimately fruitless, pursuit of Cesc Fabregas.
He's been forced to pay £27.5m for Fellaini, £4.5m more than the release clause in his contract which expired in July. There were even stories that impostors pretending to work for the club had been caught negotiating for Herrera. It almost summed up a summer's work.
Many United fans will also be baffled at Moyes' apparent lack of interest in Mesut Ozil. He's not quite the type of midfielder he was after, but the German international is so good that, if he's available, you're interested. Or at least you should be.
There's an argument that United didn't need Ozil. But Sir Alex Ferguson wasn't in desperate need of a striker last summer either and that didn't stop him signing Robin van Persie.
But when the dust finally settles on another transfer window, Moyes will be delighted to have signed Fellaini.
Moyes might have been forced to pay over the odds for the Belgian, but he's worth what someone is willing to pay. And United really needed a midfielder.
Moyes has also kept hold of Wayne Rooney, which didn't look likely when Jose Mourinho was batting his eyelids at the England striker. Fans hate to hear that he'll 'be like a new signing' but a United team with Rooney in it is better than one without.
Before Fellaini arrived, there was a point on Monday when United's best bit of business was off-loading Bebe to Pacos de Ferreira on loan. It's been a strange summer by United's standards. But by the end of it, Moyes at least had something to smile about.