Manchester United's Board Can Learn Lessons from David Moyes' Failed Reign

Rob Dawson@@RobDawsonMENManchester United CorrespondentApril 24, 2014

MUNICH, GERMANY - APRIL 09:  David Moyes, manager of Manchester United looks on during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final second leg match between FC Bayern Muenchen and Manchester United at Allianz Arena on April 9, 2014 in Munich, Germany.  (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Ask any Manchester United fan and the majority will tell you that David Moyes' short reign was a disaster.

Yes, there were mitigating circumstances like the strength of the squad he inherited and the performance levels of the players. However, he took the champions of England and was on course to finish seventh.


Next season, there will be no Champions League football at Old Trafford for the first time since 1995/96. Supporters can only hope that it's just a blip and that the board get the next appointment right. They cannot afford to get it wrong again.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MARCH 19:  Manchester United fans display a David Moyes banner during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 second round match between Manchester United and Olympiacos FC at Old Trafford on March 19, 2014 in Manchester, England.  (Ph
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

A manager's job is a complicated one, but that's especially true at Old Trafford.

The United manager is, first and foremost, expected to win. However, he's expected to do it playing a certain way, while also creating a pathway from youth team to first team for the academy graduates who prove good enough.

It's a big ask, which is why whoever takes it on is paid handsomely for it.

The business side of the club is run like the most successful Fortune 500 company. The commercial department alone is the envy of Europe's biggest clubs.

The football side is the manager's responsibility and his alone. There is no director of football or technical supervisor. Everything from signing players to giving the half-time team talk falls on his shoulders.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 31:  Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, smiles as the fans sing happy birthday during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester United and Blackburn Rovers at Old Trafford on December 31, 2011 in Manches
Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Sir Alex Ferguson's longevity and success meant the management structure at United went almost unchanged for more than a quarter of a century. It's what makes the United job unique.

And because of that, it takes a big personality to fill it. 

It's one of the areas Moyes came up short. Anyone who sat through his press conferences at Everton saw a man in control. A manager who had a tight grip of everything he said off the pitch and everything his team did on it.

However, that seemed to change when he arrived at United. He appeared to be in awe of the club he was working for. A small fish in a big pond where Ferguson had been a shark.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MARCH 18: David Moyes of Manchester United speaks to the media during a press conference at Old Trafford on March 18, 2014 in Manchester, England.  (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

If nothing else, Moyes' experience should at least give the board a better idea of what it takes to be the boss.

Moyes is not a bad manager. He proved as much at Everton. However, he wasn't cut out for this particular job.

It's a lesson the board would do well to learn quickly.

Moyes had bags of Premier League experience—11 years of it. It wasn't enough. He lacked something you cannot measure or even write on a CV.

Jon Super

He didn't have the aura to take charge of one of the world's biggest football clubs or a dressing room full of domestic and European champions.

His work ethic and drive weren't enough. You need more than that to succeed at United. It is something the board will have to take into account as they search for a replacement. 

Moyes proved that even some of the most well-respected managers aren't suitable for a job this big. 

The fans can only hope the board do everything they can to make sure the next one is. 


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