Manchester United midfielder Anderson, on loan to Serie A side Fiorentina, was quoted yesterday to have said that numerous senior players in David Moyes' roster 'want out' when the transfer market reopens in the summer in a statement that has since been vehemently by the player in question on his official Instagram account.
The statement has had an obviously large impact with one school of thought questioning the legitimacy of the assertion, while others speculate as to whom Anderson is referring to.
United have suffered from sub-standard form throughout the season, have registered a number of losses and there is a large rebuilding project that lays ahead for Moyes, partly remedied by the January acquisition of erstwhile Chelsea playmaker Juan Mata but even the honeymoon period that seemed to follow his signing has already ebbed, as United lost 2-1 to Stoke City on Saturday.
The club are now 7th in the Premier League table, four points adrift of six-placed Tottenham Hotspur and are seven points behind Liverpool, who are in fourth - the final alloted rank for Champions League qualification next season.
With declining standards and no guarantee of European football, have Anderson's comments any merit?
Gary Neville, a long-time defender and organiser for Manchester United during his playing days and a voice of reason on Sky Sports, said on Monday Night Football: 'Well I'm just stunned by that, the loyalty they've had at the club and the careers they've had at the club and playing in front of 75,000 people every week… we've seen it at Arsenal for a few years and at Liverpool for maybe ten, but these [big] clubs come through these periods.
'I'd be amazed if Manchester United had a group of players who wanted to leave. I believe they will be back, where they should be, competing for titles - it might take time, but you do not keep these clubs quiet!'
He added: 'I sometimes worry about quotes from Portuguese press or wherever and they come back here, sometimes they get lost in translation.'
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