Man United: Moyes Is Alienating Players & Fans With His Pathetic Excuses
David Moyes would have us believe that the gods are against him, and have been since the day he walked through the doors of Old Trafford to take over one of the footballing world's biggest and most prestigious posts.
The rub of the green; injuries; incompetent referees; nasty computers that cackle as they spew forth their fixture lists. All of these things, and more, have apparently conspired against the Manchester United manager, making his first season in charge of the champions 'much worse' than he expected it to be.
During desperate times, when someone feels that the whole world is against them, and all their best laid plans lie in ruins at their feet, it is a perfectly understandable, human reaction to try to find something, or someone, other than themselves, to blame.
David Moyes has generally pointed the finger squarely at that precious commodity, luck, or a lack of it, to explain United's catastrophic demise since he took charge last summer.
In so doing, he is insulting the intelligence of a set of supporters who have been suckled on success over many years, and who have grown so accustomed to, not just winning, but winning in style, that they now demand it as their divine right.
Another disappointing display against dire opposition, in front of a home crowd starved of the sustenance they have taken for granted for so long, was followed by yet more pathetic platitudes from the mouth of a manager tripping himself up over the wool he is trying to pull over eyes that cannot be blinded.
Moyes could do worse than to take a leaf out of Ernest Hemingway's book, 'The Old Man and the Sea,' in which Hemingway's old man says "It is better to be lucky. But I would rather be exact." For great managers do not rely on luck. They rely on their own greatness, and their ability to get the best from the players at their disposal. Rarely do we hear the likes of Ferguson, Mourinho or Guardiola decrying the hand they have been dealt. Yet Moyes has made misfortune his mistress over the last six months.
Manchester United should never have to rely on luck and, if after pounding your opponents' penalty box with nigh on a century of aimless crosses has reaped scant reward, is it really so much to ask that your manager try getting lucky by some other means?
Moyes is making a fool of himself, and alienating a crowd who have, thus far, given him the benefit of the doubt since he took charge. Are we really to believe that Ferguson's achievement in his final year at the helm was based solely on a few rolls of the dice? Would Jose Mourinho have found such a dearth of talent in the Old Trafford dressing room as to be constantly harping on about the urgent need to re-build?
It is extremely doubtful. Mourinho, while identifying areas in need of strengthening, would have inspired the very best out of the talent that Moyes sees fit to belittle at every turn. Not only that, but in complaining about the squad bequeathed to him by his predecessor, Moyes is attempting to pass any responsibility for United's current plight onto Ferguson himself.
There is no doubt that the players cannot be blameless in bringing about this ongoing farce, yet their inability to reach anything approaching the heights of previous seasons says more about their new manager than it does about them. It is abundantly clear that they do not believe in the Scot, and that their creativity and self-belief has been sapped with staggering speed.
Moyes complains of a 'mental softness' that has overcome his players. Yet if the same players whose collective mantelpiece is bowed down under the weight of their medal-haul are now beset by fear, then there is one man, and one man alone, to blame.
That man is David Moyes, who admitted to having 'no idea' how his team lost at the weekend, after conceding a 'diabolical' second goal. If the gods really are against him, it may be time for Moyes to take a trip to the crossroads and strike a deal with the devil instead. Few other options remain.