Sunday 30 September 2018

United's 29-year low is only ever going to get worse

I'm not angry, I'm not frustrated, I'm not even upset or annoyed - Manchester United are in the worst mess I've ever seen yet all I can do is shake my head and look on in apathy. United's 3-1 defeat at West Ham was our third in seven games - seven games in which we've cobbled together 10 measly points to slide into the bottom half of the table with arguably the kindest-looking opening fixtures a United side has had in living memory. It's our worst start for 29 years - worse even than it was under David Moyes, whom had the same horrible early season form but with more goals scored and a better goal difference. In the Scot's defence, he had to face Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City early on - this time around, only Spurs have presented our biggest hurdle. Leicester, Brighton, Burnley, Watford, West Ham and Wolves - with all due respect, these should be sides that should never even have a prayer against a club with the resources and financial clout of Manchester United. It looked as though we had turned a corner after three successive away wins, but yet nothing could be further from the truth - those wins merely served to paper over the multitude of cracks permeating through the club - cracks that have left a gaping chasm in the crumbling Old Trafford facade that look impossible to fix.

It's not so much even the results, it's the manner of United's meek surrenders on a weekly basis. An absolute shambles on repeat - board, manager, players and owners at loggerheads, a squad ripped apart by infighting and dressing room toxicity and players either not giving their all or simply not good enough. The few players that are good enough have been alienated by Jose Mourinho, there are no discernible tactics, the team is chopped and changed every week and the most successful manager of his generation looks a man who has lost all semblance of the plot. Three years on from his appointment and the club are in even worse a mess than we were when he took over. The 3-1 defeat at West Ham felt like the end, the ugly parting of the ways and the point of no return for the manager, but it won't be: to sack Mourinho now would fly in the face of the theory of how things are done under this current regime, this slapstick, poisonous. rotten-to-the core Glazer ownership. While the reclusive American family, who never talk to the media about United, can be accused of many things, to their credit being being knee-jerk is not one of them. Moyes was sacked only after Champions League qualification became impossible, and the same happened with Louis van Gaal. Despite a run of nine games without a win at the turn of year in 2015, the Dutchman was only dismissed at the end of the season when United had finished fifth.

As is usual after a result such as yesterday, there have been calls for Mourinho's sacking, but nothing has come from inside the club and it seems likely the Glazers will hold fire when it comes to pulling the trigger on Mourinho. They'll wait, but Mourinho has never recovered from a slump such as this, and it looks like there's no way out. Manchester United are in crisis and a club in complete disarray.

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