5 Reasons Why Manchester United Should Sack Their Manager Now
It was strange to learn that when Manchester United replaced Sir Alex Ferguson with David Moyes there was no interview process, rather the former manager picking his replacement based on what he knew of him.
In his first press conference as United manager, Moyes explained how he learnt that he got a job he didn't even apply for.
"The first thing he said to me was 'I'm retiring.' I said 'Yeah, when?' I mean, he was never going to retire was he? But he said 'next week,'" Moyes said, as reported by Sky Sports. "His next words were 'and you're the next Manchester United manager.' I didn't get a chance to say yes or no, I was told I was the next Manchester United manager by Sir Alex, for me that was enough."
This season has been dreadful and, as it stands, United look set for their worst finish since the 1989/90 campaign, which is fairly remarkable when you consider they are the current champions.
Moyes still has the support of some fans, although the number turning against him is seemingly growing each week. Here are five reasons why those fans believe he should be sacked and not given a second season at the club.
Everton's Success Shows Him Up
Everton finished sixth with 63 points last season and Marouane Fellaini was their top scorer. With six games left to play they have already matched last season's points tally and have played some fantastic football under new manager Roberto Martinez.
Despite having a worse squad and considerably less money to spend, Martinez has done a much better job with last season's sixth best team than Moyes has done with last season's champions. Moyes even took their top scorer with him.
Like the joke that has been doing the rounds for months says, Moyes spent a decade trying to get Everton to finish above United, and now he's finally achieved it.
New Managers Don't Always Fail
There have been some arguments that this is a transitional phase for United and that any manager replacing Ferguson would have struggled. This is more than likely true.
If United were somewhere in the top four then you could argue that is a reasonable position. Moyes shouldn't have been expected to retain the title in his first season, but the squad he inherited was certainly good enough to finish in the top four. As it stands, United are seventh.
When you consider that four of the six teams ahead of United changed their manager last summer and also have the excuse of it being a transitional campaign, Moyes' record is all the more worrying. Manuel Pellegrini and Jose Mourinho are in the running for winning the title in their first season.
Tim Sherwood took charge of Tottenham Hotspur on 16 December 2013, having never been a manager before, to replace the sacked Andre Villas-Boas. The Guardian reported this week that he will be asked to step down at the end of the season.
Villas-Boas picked up 1.69 points per game and was sacked less than halfway through the season. Sherwood has won 1.88 points per game and looks set to lose his job at the end of the season. Moyes has won 1.72 points per game. Are United really going to settle for someone who can't even measure up to Sherwood's managerial record?
Spineless Performances Against Top Teams
From the 33 points that have been on offer against the six teams above United this season, they have picked up just six. Moyes had a dreadful record when playing against the best teams in the league during his time at Everton, and that hasn't changed since he became the manager of the champions.
Losing home and away to both City and Liverpool is a dreadful return, particularly when you consider the manner of those defeats. The two 3-0 losses at home to these sides were so spineless, with neither team having the play particularly well to get a result.
How are United supposed to come back stronger next season when they crumble so easily when faced with a good side?
Dreadful Home Form
Hull City, Southampton and Stoke City are among the nine teams who have a better home record than United this season. Norwich and Newcastle have collected the same number of points as United at home. Sunderland have the worst record at home this season and United's form is closer to them than it is even to Everton's, who still only have the fourth best home form.
Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City occupy the top three places when looking at home form, and it is therefore no surprise that these teams also occupy the top three places in the league table. Title-winning campaigns are built on home form and Old Trafford used to be a fortress. Teams were terrified of playing there but now they must fancy their chances, with United having only won one more game than they've lost at home.
So, where is it all going wrong? Moyes' comments ahead of the defeat against Newcastle might give you a clue about his mentality.
"They come to Old Trafford and we're going to make it as hard and difficult for them as we possibly can," Moyes said, as reported by Sky Sports.
Can you imagine any other manager who is supposed to have aspirations of winning the league talking about making it "difficult" for a mid-table opponent at home?
No More Champions League Football
After losing to Bayern Munich on Wednesday, United now have no chance of playing in the Champions League next season. Their only remaining hope was to win the competition itself so that they would be allowed to compete next season to defend their title.
As it stands, United won't even be playing in the Europa League. Many fans will probably see this as blessing, but it is no less damning on Moyes' performance this season.
Between 2008 and 2011, United played in three Champions League finals. They are a European giant, they were once a permanent fixture in the competition, but Moyes' inability to secure even a fourth-placed finish means no more European football for them.
It stands to reason that this will have a knock-on effect as to which players are available to sign in the summer. Which top class player would choose a club not playing in Europe's elite competition over one that is? And so the cycle continues.