#ManchesterUnited had their first glimmer of hope in a long time when #Arsenal held #ManCity to a 2-2 draw this weekend, putting their hopes of #ChampionsLeague qualification into their own hands – win their last 2 league outings (away to #WestHam and home to #Bournemouth) and they pip the citizens to 4th. They failed the first test with flying colors, not just losing to the #Hammers 3-2 on the last #BoleynGround game (they move to the #Olympic Stadium next season) but losing with aplomb – they were anaemic, lackluster and tactically, physically and technically trounced by #Bilic’s men. Any hopes #LVG might have had to hold on his job this summer would have to have vanished after this game. Any sensible leadership team would make sure of it. But things haven’t been sensible at United since #Gill and #SAF retired together. It’s not just that United have slipped on the field. They’ve been utterly ridiculous at management level. #EdWoodward is a revenue junkie. He is not a football man. #LVG is a spent force. The modern super-manager (think #Pep, #Simeone, #Carlo, #Pochettino) has deeply adapted to the changing nature of European football. LVG hasn’t.
So where do they go from here, given their ongoing status as an uber-rich club?
It seems like United have decided against #Mourinho. Perhaps they’ll bring in someone else or they plan to continue with either LVG or experiment with #Giggs. Either would be a disastrous decision for sure. Especially now with no #ChampionsLeague to use as bait for top talent in the summer.
In reality, United need to undergo major surgery, across the board. Free advice to the #Glazer family:
1. Move Ed Woodward back to Chief Revenue Officer instead of CEO. He excels at the Revenue piece but is a rubbish football man. Bring back David Gill for a 2-year stint, to steady the ship. Pay him silly money. Or buy him a goat. Or something.
2. Hire a Director of Football. There are a handful of brilliant folk in that position. And in the post SAF, modern football era, a Director of Football is a critical post to fill.
3. Let LVG go and bring in a top coach. While there aren’t too many available this summer, in order of preference, break the bank on – #Simeone, #Pochettino, Mourinho.
4. Clean out deadwood on the pitch – #Fellaini, #Rojo, #Valencia, #PhilJones, possibly #Mata and above all, #WayneRooney. He’s utterly past his sell by date and at £300,000 per week, occupying the wages of 2 potential stars (see below).
5. Bring in – a top striker (#Griezmann perhaps?); a creative 10 (they could even consider #Ibra for a year to fill this gap if they can’t tempt or find a top #10, else a #Mahrez would be ideal in that position); a top destroyer (the rumor mill had #RenatoSanchez but he’s signed for the absolutely brilliantly run #BayernMunich now, so it will need to be someone else – perhaps a #Kante or someone similar); a top center back to partner #Smalling – ideally someone like #Varane for this spot and then a couple of younger players to provide backup to the young #Fosu-Mensah and a returning #LukeShaw. Oh and then hope as hell that #DeGea doesn’t make his way to #RealMadrid.
So why would Griezmann, Mahrez or Varane choose United over a club playing ChampionsLeague football next season? They might not. But money plays a very important role in this decision making process, so let’s look at the math:
1. Varane – United would have to pay £35 mil (10 over market value) + wages of £160,000 per week (He currently makes £80,000 at Real)
2. Griesman -United would have to pay £70 mil (20 over market value) + wages of £200,000 per week (He currently makes £50,000 at Atleti)
3. Mahrez -United would have to pay £45 mil (20 over market value) +wages of £175,000 per week (He currently makes£40,000 but will be offered £70,000 by Leicester)
Now, salary is not an issue for United. The added£535,000 per week is net zero if the departures happen. So let’s look at the purchase price – by my math, United need an outlay of £150 million for these 3 plus another £30 – 40 mil for a destroyer, so about £180-200 mil. Sales of Rooney, Fellaini, Jones, Rojo and Valencia should get them about £45 mil, bringing net spend to £130-150 mil, which is entirely in their wheelhouse. They’ve dropped way more than this over the past 2 seasons for a lot worse, after all.
Truth is, none of this will happen. The decline will continue unabated. RIP United.