Manchester United missed out on two important deals yesterday as the champions uncharacteristically got caught up in the deadline day drama.
Plenty of United fans will be scratching their heads this morning and trying to work out why deals for Athletic Bilbao midfielder Ander Herrera and Real Madrid left back Fabio Coentrao didn’t go through.
Even more fans will be suggesting that Fergie would never have let the situation get to the final day but it’s important to reflect on the positive signing of Marouane Fellaini and try to root out just what went wrong at Old Trafford.
David Moyes can’t take all of the blame because he’s only partly responsible for the actual deals going through.
He doesn’t have control over how much cash the club will throw at transfers, he simply identifies the players he wants and urges the club to go about their business making sure he gets his first choice targets.
The deal for Herrera was seemingly held up at the final hurdle due to bureaucratic problems the United delegates in Spain faced and that’s nothing that the boss can do anything about.
The chief executive Ed Woodward will be blamed far more than Moyes because he has more of a hands on role in terms of making the deals happen.
Again, there will be throw backs to the old regime and the statement that David Gill wouldn’t have let the club get pushed around on the final day of the transfer window.
However, it’s important to reflect that Woodward is new to this particular role and he won’t have mastered the finer details and issues involved with transfers just yet but United fans can be rest assured, he shouldn’t let this sort of saga happen again.
It’s also important to point out that he’s had plenty of other issues to deal with away from the pitch with regards to Wayne Rooney’s future and possible new deals for key players, which all takes time away from being able to deal with transfers and the negotiation process.
The Glazers themselves, the money men are also partly to blame because their reluctance to commission big deals for business reasons earlier in the summer added to the whole deadline day fiasco.
It’s only natural they will be a little more nervous about backing David Moyes with several top transfers than would have been the case had Sir Alex Ferguson still been in charge.
However, they put their cash on the table on the final day and could have ended up spending just under £60 million on two midfield players so when the club really needed them to step up and get the cheque book out that’s exactly what happened.
The old regime set a precedent under Ferguson which wasn’t followed by the club with regards to transfers this summer.
The old regime did leave deals to go through late but that was rare and it could be the case that the deadline day drama which plagued United yesterday was a one-off. It would be very surprising if it happened again.
What did you make of Manchester United yesterday?
image: © Paolo Camera