“Football…bloody hell!” #SAF on winning the #ECL, 1999. #MUFC @ManUtd

Champ20ns flag at Old Trafford

Champ20ns flag at Old Trafford

So, having not posted anything (terrible, I know!) for quite some time, it seems that my beloved Man United’s struggles this season have sparked the blogging bug in me again.  Correction: the hyperbolic criticism of our new manager of half-a-season, David Moyes, has sparked this in me.

Ok, I admit I’m a glass-half-full Red Army supporter, but this post underlines my passion and what I believe.  And I make no apologies for it…it’s because I love Manchester United F.C. and care deeply about the club.

I read a common sense piece on Sky Sports (here) today on United’s current predicament, which was devoid of the hyperbolic crap happily being spewn about our “hapless manager” and how it is “all Moyes’ fault”…a lot of United fans haven’t given him a chance since the moment he signed the contract, which is just tosh.

Some “fans” have been as bad as the morons at Ewood Park and their disgraceful slating and baiting of Blackburn Rovers’ former manager Steve Keen.  And likewise as bad as the idiotic Chelski fans who continuously slated the “Spanish Waiter”…the tactically excellent and proven winner, Rafa Benitez (who incidentally won them the Europa League in his very short tenure).

It’s easy to slate an opposition team when they’re struggling…we’ve all done it with impudent glee – I certainly have!  And I expect it from rival fans – it’s part of the game!

But now is the time for United supporters everywhere to step up to the Red Army plate and get behind them.  Slating them just adds more ammunition to the rivals and undermines our own team yet further.  I mean, come on, Moyes has only been in the job for half-a-season.

Redknapp (admittedly not the oracle on football matters, but damn better placed than most of us lot in light of his playing career under various top managers and his access to Sky Sports’ data and analysis) says:

“But if Ferguson was still the manager now and he didn’t have Wayne Rooney, Van Persie and Michael Carrick available, which is the situation Moyes has been in, United wouldn’t win any trophies.  This squad needs major surgery.”

A modern day miracle?

A modern day miracle?

Sir Alex Ferguson performed a minor miracle in his last season.  After winning nothing the season before, he brought in Van Persie and sucked every last drop of ability, determination and brilliance out of an aging and in-need-of-another-rebuild squad…he helped guide his club to winning the Premier League.  At a canter.  None of us United fans can blame him for leaving when he did.  He knew it needed a rebuild.  He knew it would take a year or two.  He knew he didn’t have the energy to do it, at his age, anymore without severely impacting on his health.  I salute him for his decision and love him for all he achieved for us…despite fans calling for him to be sacked a year or two into his 26-year tenure at United!!  Think about that for a while.

This season merely drills home just what an amazing and one-of-a-kind leader and manager he truly was.

I’m opening myself up to criticism here, but here we go anyway…injuries could and should never be used as a reason or excuse for not performing as a squad.  But, forgive me for throwing this in to the mix as one of a number of reasons for our struggles this season.

Rooney?  Moyes had somehow got him back to his best this season – he wasn’t at the races last season – after his pre-season injury and before his December injury.  Van Persie has hardly played this season after back-to-back EPL season top scorer (I think).  Both these two world class forwards being ripped out of any team would make those teams pretty impotent.  Without Carrick we have no top, experienced central midfielder at the club.

I would throw Phil Jones into the injury mix too – he showed against Real Madrid (Away) and Spurs (Away) just what an excellent disruptive holding midfielder he could be.  Although I do see him as our centre back and caption in seasons to come, he is an ideal foil for the talented, mercurial and badly under-rated Carrick.  Clearly, Carrick needs that sort of workhorse next to him to free up space for him to exploit – he can’t do that alone.  Sadly, Jones has been cursed with injuries again.  It’s no coincidence that our results this season fell apart from the long unbeaten run we were on once Carrick and then Jones were out injured.

Anyway, back to our “beleagured manager”, David Moyes.  Sacking the manager would make things worse.  It would mean yet more backroom upheaval.  And another 12-18 months (minimum) of re-building would be required from the start of that man’s appointment.  It would also smack of the “Manager Merry-go-round Clubs” that have little stability and little identity.  I personally believe he is the man for the job and, given time, will bring the glory days and success back to this great club.

And now back to our fans…our SUPPORTERS (the clue is in the name).  Some of you may hate me saying this…but the truth sometimes hurts.

For me, United Away fans are the die-hards and are excellent in their support of us when on the road.  They’ve been brilliant this season.

But in the 20+ years I’ve been going to Old Trafford for our Home league and cup games, and supporting my team as best I can, some of the Home so-called “supporters” (and also the armchair “experts” especially) need to take a long hard look at themselves…we need to get behind our boys and support them.  Not winning after 10mins at Home should NEVER cue angry and sarcastic comments at our players.  No matter what club you support.

Especially not now when the players, shot of any confidence, need us most.

Or do you want to be plastic Chelski fans?

#rantover #feelingpassionate #believe #mufc

About Dan Purvis

PR, comms, digital / social media specialist and advisor.

While consistently balancing the need for sustainable, impactful campaigns that incorporate PR, social/digital media and external communications in the mix, I ensure that game-changing strategies are aligned to commercial goals and objectives. Passionate about social media, the value of digital properties and PR, I have a proven track record of successfully leading various PR-specific and multi-discipline marketing campaigns. Internal comms, crisis comms and stakeholder liaison is also a core strength of mine.


  1. I dont know if its so much a confidence thing. Carrick’s stats for a layer of his pooiitsn and style are exceptional throughout his united career, but we must remember that United played a different system back in 08/09. More recently Fergie has been using him more as the lynchpin; as the cohesive between defence and attack, unlike before where he was granted freedom to roam forward more often, he is now required to be there to bring the ball out of the defence and remain deep to disrupt play. His stats speaks volumes of how well hes accomplished his tasks.

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