Monday, 1 July 2013

How much was Fergie worth to United's success?

Early Moyes shot in new training kit with unretiring Fergie
The 3D personality of Sir Alex Ferguson dragged an average Manchester United over the line and the difference in points between last season and this will tell us the exact worth of all the inspiring, cajoling and intimidating.

United fans are putting on a brave face but worry lines will appear once it becomes apparent the control Sir Alex exercised through results no longer exists.

There will be no Moyesy-time, no banning of reporters, no imagined injuries preventing players joining up with national teams - and there will be no title.

After 26 years of bullying, match day officials must feel relieved. No longer will a game at Old Trafford be one to be dreaded and they can do their job without fear of private admonishment or public ridicule. The new man can tap his expensive watch all he likes but he has won nothing and his histrionics will count for little.

Fergie's last day as United boss at WBA
Journalists, too, will be able to ask a reasonable pre-match question without the prospect of a bollocking or a ban. After games the written press and media other than MUTV will be allowed to talk to the United manager. It is unimaginable that any other manager will ever be allowed the treat the media with the same contempt Ferguson displayed.

The Premier League maybe the most successful in the world but Richard Scudamore’s failure to stand up to Sir Alex was weak.  Can you imagine the manager of, say, the New York Yankees refusing to talk to the media after games? He would last less than a minute as would the Major League Baseball commissioner.

England will also benefit from the the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson. His antipathy towards the Football Association manifested itself in his refusal to let players join up with the national team if he felt it was against the interests of Manchester United. Fair enough, United pay their wages but would he have acted in the same way if the national team had been Scotland? It was another abuse of power that the FA declined to do anything about.
Different tracksuit, same face-to-face needed
Roy Hodgson’s team is built around young mobile United players. Wayne Rooney (if he stays), Phil Jones, Tom Cleverly, Danny Welbeck, Chris Smalling and Wilfred Zaha will all be more available to England.

This is how Sir Alex won titles and why David Moyes will find it difficult especially in his first  year. Through his success Ferguson became not just bigger than the club but more powerful than those running the game.

As of now, without a single result to his name at United, Moyes is merely another dimensional manager ready to be chewed up and spat out by those his predecessor treated with disdain.