Who must United keep ahold of this summer?

About 27 years ago, a legend began to form as Sir Alex Ferguson turned from a little known boss to one of the world’s most looked up to managers. As the Scot goes out as a Premier League Champion, a thunderous up and down 5-5 draw at The Hawthorns may not have been the way he would have liked to end his managerial career – but nonetheless, onwards and upwards for Manchester United. Michael Carrick noted (via The Telegraph):

“We’ve thanked the manager for everything he’s done and he’s thanked us. We’re ready to move on, and there are new challenges for all of us. We’re looking forward to it. The manager wanted to win but the job for the season is done. I’m sure he can retire very satisfied.”

Capping off a trophy ladened career with United’s 20th Barclays Premier League title certainly makes retiring a bit easier for Sir Alex, yet questions remain about the next generations of the club and which direction we are heading. The answer to any pending questions of whether or not United will falter under a new manager – is no. In the grand scheme of football, United will continue to press on with their unique blend of youth and veterans who carry both the knowledge passed along by Sir Alex, and the newer players like Tom Cleverley, Shinji Kagawa and Robin van Persie who just in one to two seasons have molded into more complete players. Although Ferguson was unable to touch the footballing hearts of the younger players as much as he was able to with Ryan Giggs, Nemanja Vidic or Paul Scholes, the passion will forever remain in their blood.

Now, a true changing of the guard will be in order this summer, but if the stars align properly there is no doubt that United will once again challenge for every domestic and European trophy within their grasps. As United transitions between the historic days of Sir Alex over to a major trophy-less David Moyes, nothing but positives will be drawn upon as United resume training under Moyes on July 1st. Of course, there are going to be bumps in the road, but despite any potential turmoil the former Everton manager’s 6 year contract indicate he will be given time at Manchester United to develop. Moyes will have newly acquired resources in which he did not have at Everton, and a club rich of history with a framework in place. At 50, Moyes could be in prime position to retain the managerial position at United for the next 30 years should success come his way (and a few trophies as well).

The numerous positives that surround Manchester United, still give way to a few questions that are beginning to arise around the rumour mill, and even proper playing time issues. First matters, David Moyes let Wayne Rooney walk away from the Toffees years ago, can he keep ahold of the 27-year-old this time around? One of the mainstay’s at United, Rooney has quickly become the face of the historic club and certainly made a name for himself – especially featuring in the number one jersey sales for the Premier League.

Wayne Rooney is, nor will never have blistering pace like Cristiano Ronaldo or score 90 goals in a calendar year, but he does not need to. The current makeup of the Manchester United squad allows the English midfielder/forward to thrive in a sunken secondary striker role allowing him acres of space in the center of the park. Michael Carrick and Tom Cleverley certainly provide stability and can easily retain possession, while Rooney serves as the vital link between the forwards and that of a new-age United defense that will likely take form in the coming seasons.

Although Rooney possesses the world-class quality that should bring United an attacking edge, his future at Old Trafford may now be tainted with his recent second transfer request and is the 27-year-old’s second formal request. Yes, we can let one non-logical thought processed moment go; however, as he seems to be further distancing himself from both Sir Alex and Manchester United, the future remains uncertain.

And where to we begin with Hernandez? The highly unused forward often times played third or fourth fiddle to Robin van Persie, Wayne Rooney, and Danny Welbeck. The Mexican international proved his worth this season and why he is such a prolific scorer – even tallying the last goal under the tutelage of Sir Alex in the draw against West Brom. Despite the limited minutes, the Mexican talisman makes the most of his appearances and seizes nearly every opportunity in front of net. El Matador may leave Old Trafford should he not see an increase in minutes under Moyes – and in my opinion, rightly so.

It’s possible that Chicharito remained so calm with his cameo performances because he felt he owed a debt to Sir Alex for bringing him to the club in the first place. Javier Hernandez told MUTV:

“The impact that Sir Alex has had on me is massive. He gave me this big chance to play at the biggest club in the world. He has taught me a lot and I only have thankful words for him. It [Sir Alex’s retirement] is not only a loss for the British fans but he has changed the football across the world.”

The respect in the Manchester United squad is uncanny in today’s modern football. Hernandez has been the epitome of a true leadership and class during his time with United as he continues to impress from both his statements as he rides his time on the bench, while also thriving from his striking role in the Premier League. Moyes should be hard pressed to keep ahold of the Mexican frontman for the coming seasons as RVP is surely a prolific goal-scorer, but Chicharito adds a speed dimension allowing for additional space to become available to the flying Dutchman and his comrades.

In the end, this is only the end of a managers career – and not the end to United’s success. Sir Alex is and was, one of a kind in his profession. So, it’s okay, as I am still left stunned another manager will take over Old Trafford this summer. However, as Sir Alex Ferguson wants the same undying support for the club and himself, to be translated over towards the upcoming season. Relish the glorious last season from our fabled club – and cheers to the never ending trophies to come.


Robert Moore is writing for SN on behalf of One United USA. Follow @Robert_Moore24 on Twitter.

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  1. Much as I enjoyed reading your ‘who’s in and who’s out’, there are some points on which we differ.
    SAF was not a ‘little known boss’ otherwise the board at MUFC would not have pursued him. His track record, albeit in leagues not as competitive as the premiership, stands up as nothing short of remarkable. In a league dominated by the Glasgow 2 he crafted a team that went on to break the ‘mold’ by winning 3 premiership titles (2 of which came on the bounce). I will not bore you with the rest of his achievements, North of the border other than to point to ‘Europe’ no less.

    I don’t see David Moyes as manager of MUFC at 80 years of age, irrespective of whether he goes on to win 5 Champions Leagues. David Moyes, and I am not speaking from any insider knowledge, will be pleased to have a successful 15 years at which point he can then decide whether he should stay or leave.

    Regarding Wayne Rooney; you are correct he doesn’t possess a ‘fleet of foot’ like Ronaldo, but then who does? His ‘football brain’ however ticks over like a formula 1 racing car and what he lacks over 20 metres he makes up for with, blind-side runs, or, when to hold and when to give decisions and as for finding a pass….. think back to the ball he played for RVP to strike an amazing volley.
    My own opinion on the ‘keep or release Rooney’ is based on a view from another Scot.
    Jock Stein, the brilliant manager of Celtic FC (on hearing that one of his best players wanted a move away from the club) said ‘When they don’t want to play for this club, why should we force them to stay.’

    Finally… David Moyes isn’t SAF… he doesn’t want to be SAF…. he isn’t looking to be loved like SAF was…. however where he and SAF are intrinsically linked is…. they both want to win matches and they both want to win trophies..and they both want to win titles.

    In closing, it wasn’t all shiny and brilliant for SAF in the early days, a point he clearly made at OT when addressing the fans… and where MUFC, the fans of MUFC and others convinced him that he was the one, he did what David Moyes will do come July 1st….. he got his head down, he changed things, he worked hard, he believed, he bought players and he sold players….. That’s what MUFC do. It’s what we have always done… it’s what we always will do and next season will be no different.


  2. Macca,

    I truly thank you for your input on my article and I look forward to receiving more from you in the future. First, I completely agree with you in terms of your Wayne Rooney statements. The lad is an absolute gem and one of United’s most valuable members – and should be kept in the squad, and hopefully with some coaxing and maybe another change of heart will remain with United long-term. If he really wants to go, I say let him as it would only be detrimental in terms of his playing career and I would hate to see talent go wasted on the bench as many players do at say, Real Madrid in recent seasons.

    In regards to David Moyes, I think he’s got the toughest job in football now not because he is in charge of Manchester United, but because he’s taking over the footsteps of a legend. Although I believe Fergie will be making a few decisions for the club, the ultimate goal for Moyes is to continue and win football games. Moyes certainly must prove himself (in the first season especially) and give the supporters what any loyal fan wants, wins.

    I believe the belief in the club will be at an all time high with the club as Sir Alex rallied everyone at Old Trafford last weekend because you’re right, that what MUFC fans do.

    -Robert Moore

  3. Hello Robert.

    On the Rooney thing. Let’s put aside the fact that he’s talented beyond belief…. let’s put aside the fact that he has, and has displayed, great scoring abilities…. and let’s put aside the fact that MUFC are a better squad with him than without him…… However…. if he feels he isn’t getting enough time on the pitch or whatever his reasons for the transfer request… then he should be allowed to LEAVE.
    We are forever hearing how no player is ‘bigger’ than the club….. well! here is a great opportunity to stand by those convictions.

    In closing MUFC lost the services of Cantona, Hughes, Robson, Keane….. etc etc etc… and what happened this season without them?… #20
    I can go further back when Charlton, Law and Bestie finished playing and still look where MUFC are today.
    Should Rooney decide to leave MUFC fans will cry for 10 minutes and then say… ‘What’s next’


  4. Macca,

    You’re absolutely correct with your statements. No player, and I mean no player is bigger than a club and I would not be surprised if Moyes let him go once again. At the same time, I think for me personally, supporters get attacked to a certain players work rate and personality that seeing a player like Rooney go would break my heart…Not to mention break my wallet as I have numerous Rooney memorabilia and shirts that I indeed would never wear again (saying that on a lighter note)…I think the idea of this entire transfer process that kills me, is that Rooney is openly requesting to leave which leaves a sour taste in my mouth (or so SAF says at least) and it’s confusing as to why a player who is fairly admired at the club over the years, is wanting out. You’re right though, we’ll get #21 with or without him.

    If he is to leave, it’s going to be saddening to see a caliber player like him leave OT, but in the grand scheme of things the quality and depth of our squad is brilliant-which would give way for more room to Kagawa and even Chicharito.


  5. Hello Robert….

    Here’s what is strange about a transfer request from Rooney…..

    Where else in the Premiership is better….. for the way football is played…. in respect of winning of trophies….. in the depth of squad…… for looking after each and every player?

    Yes Chelsea and Man city may have the funds to say to him….. ‘How much do you want?’ and if that’s his agenda then maybe it’s best he moves on.

    I listened to SAF at the press interview when he talked about the ‘Rooney’ transfer request in a way in which I have never heard SAF speak on such matters.

    If he moves on, and for me it wouldn’t matter if it was Chelsea or Arsenal or City or anywhere, I will be saddened for 10 minutes and then think…. right ‘What’s next’


  6. Good blog! I think a big part of Moyes success next season will depend on Ryan Giggs/Paul scholes being part of the backroom staff. I see Giggsy as a perfect fit for being a player/coach next season. Sir Alex has always tried to get his long term players into coaching and I truly believe that is what is needed in this club’s massive transition without Sir Alex at the helm.
    Trust me, all the players (including new signings) will respect whatever Giggsy or Scholes have to stay and it will keep the players motivated and have that winning mentality that all the United players had under Sir Alex.

  7. Sathya,

    Thank you for your kind words. Please take a look at today’s article I’ve published on here which is a sole feature on Ryan Giggs and how important he is going to be especially since Sir Alex is retired.


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