Manchester United are something of a conundrum under David Moyes.
Away from home, they are very impressive indeed. But at Old Trafford – a ground once regarded by many as a fortress – the reigning but faltering Premier League champions have looked a shadow of their former selves.
Liverpool put them to the sword earlier this month, and now Manchester City replicated that 3-0 score-line, courtesy of a brace from Edin Dzeko and a late Yaya Toure strike.
The result was just another home disappointment in what is fast becoming a considerable collection for United. And former player Gary Neville believes something needs to change to prevent their poor record from continuing for the long haul.
Neville was a pundit for Sky Sports on Tuesday evening and he said plenty during the match, but one statement stood out above the rest, as he talked of United suffering “an identity crisis”.
“They’ve got to have a re-think, Manchester United, about where they’re going,” Neville said.
“The philosophy of pace, power, strength, has been there throughout the years. But at the moment, the midfield players really aren’t driving forward, (there is) no real speed in wide areas. It’s an identity crisis.”
Watching United these days is a befuddling experience. They do not play with the confidence or the efficiency enjoyed during Neville’s time at the club.
There are moments when it appears, but they are sporadic moments, and more often than not on their travels.
United fans will already be well aware that their problems will more likely be solved this summer than before. But Moyes must look at those midfielders that Neville feels are not driving forward, and those wingers he feels are not offering pace, and rectify that to ensure this season is a blip and not a glimpse of things to come.