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4 Painful Parallels between Moyes and Mourinho

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Modified 20 Dec 2019, 17:06 IST

West Ham United v Manchester United - Premier League
David Moyes and Jose Mourinho

As the infamous ‘Third Season Curse’ of Mourinho looms large over the Portuguese manager and the team itself, United fans are not too sure on how they should feel going into the new season.

Last season, Manchester United finished second, with 81 points last season which is miles ahead of any of their previous premier league outings since the Ferguson era.

However, this just wasn’t enough for Jose Mourinho to cement his position amidst the United faithful as the most successful club in England failed to win the Premier League or the Champions League for the fifth consecutive year.

Whilst the verdict on the manager’s time at the glorious club is a topic of debate amongst fans, it begs to ask the question has anything changed since the short-lived time of David Moyes? 

#4 Style of play

Chelsea v Manchester United - The Emirates FA Cup Final
Even Sanchez has struggled to settle down at United

The biggest criticism of the Red Devils in the post-Ferguson era has been the lack of flair in United’s play. The team that struck fear into opponents once upon a time is very different to the current team that has sometimes struggled to reap points at Old Trafford.

Yes, United are scoring goals, but are they scoring enough? Manchester City’s season last year answers that question with a resounding ‘NO’. United have the players but are simply unable to regain that killer edge that was characteristic of the famous United teams of the past.

Players with immense skill and promise have flattered to deceive with most of them failing to make a mark on the Premier League scene. Paul Pogba, Juan Mata, Marcos Rojo, Henrikh Mkhitaryan are some of the exhibits in this regard. While Eric Bailly, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Nemanja Matic and David De Gea are exceptions to this point, it has simply failed to translate into telling success.

Under Moyes, the United team looked in tatters. It is hard to look back and find any bright spark from the United team of 2013-2014. During this period, United’s defence looked almost invisible in numerous games and was at times downright woeful. Players with pure pedigree such as Vidic, Ferdinand and Evra looked like schoolboys in a yard.


While Mourinho has worked hard towards building an air-tight defence, the fact still remains – its lacking. This is further validated by ‘The Special One’ laying down a strong emphasis on big-money signings to reinforce the United backline.

Bear in mind, United seem to be overstaffed in the department as of now with Jones, Smalling, Rojo, Lindelof, Shaw, Young and Bailly all fighting to save their spot. With Mourinho in charge, United, seeing its most impressive phase since the departure of Sir Alex, seems to be lacking the zing in attack, solidarity in defence and creativity in midfield.

Every player on the team sheet seems to possess amazing talent, but United are still looking like a good high school band rather than a symphonic orchestra.

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Published 08 Aug 2018, 13:41 IST
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