Football News

David Moyes: Manchester United needed evolution, not revolution

By Harry Edwards

Published: 17:55, 5 November 2019 | Updated: 9:16, 7 November 2019

Former Manchester United manager David Moyes has defended his spell at the club, insisting any changes would have to take time.

The Scot was given the unenviable task of replacing Sir Alex Ferguson at the Old Trafford helm in 2013, signing a six-year contract with the Red Devils after leaving Everton.

But Moyes would not see out a full season, getting sacked in April 2014 with United set to miss out on Champions League football for the first time in almost 20 years while also seeing a poor run of results at Old Trafford.

David Moyes’ Manchester United reign: Five things to know…

  • Moyes replaced Sir Alex Ferguson as Manchester United manager in July 2013.
  • The Scot signed a six-year deal but was sacked just 10 months later in April 2014.
  • Under Moyes, United had a record of 26 wins, 10 draws and 15 losses from 51 games.
  • Moyes has been criticised by the likes of Rio Ferdinand for his spell at Old Trafford.
  • But Moyes has defended himself, insisting the club needed evolution not revolution.

Following Moyes’ departure, Louis van Gaal, Jose Mourinho and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer have all taken charge of Manchester United on a permanent basis, but all have so far failed to reignite the fire of the Red Devils who remain without a Premier League title since Sir Alex’s last campaign in 2012/13.

Despite the struggles of United managers since, Moyes is still often highlighted as the worst of the bunch to try and replace Sir Alex, with former Red Devils defender Rio Ferdinand particularly scathing in his criticism of the Scotsman.

And while Moyes admits he will have a different viewpoint to the likes of Ferdinand, the 56-year-old insists he had to put his stamp on Manchester United.

“Well I look at it in many ways, you know, they’re very experienced players,” he told BBC’s Scottish Football Podcast.

“They’ll have seen how good managers work so they’ll see it differently but I had to put my stamp on Manchester United.

“But the big thing about Manchester United – Manchester United was never going to be a revolution, it was evolution and it would take time and it would be a slow change.

“It couldn’t be a quick change because they had players who were getting a bit older and they were going to have to be changed around.

“So it was something when you look back, I think, people would say it was quite obvious it was going to take a bit of time for Manchester United to change things around.”

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Moyes: I was a good fit for Manchester United

While some managers are appointed by a club’s board, made up of several members who would have given each prospective new boss due diligence, Moyes was hand-picked by Sir Alex himself to take over at Manchester United.

And despite the failure that would follow, Moyes believes he was a good fit for the club at the time, recalling the phone call that preceded his appointment.

He added: “When Sir Alex phoned me and said ‘Come and meet’ him, it wasn’t a case of ‘We’re thinking of you being the Manchester United manager’ it was a case of saying ‘You are the next Manchester United manager’.

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“And that really made it very difficult. But I look back, I actually think that if you look at what I’d done – my fit – what Manchester United had chosen over the years and where they had chosen and their support for managers and not buckling.

“It was a good fit for me but as I think, at that time, it was a good fit for Manchester United as well.”