Sir Alex Ferguson’s successor David Moyes is coming under increasing pressure after back-to-back 3-0 losses to Liverpool and Manchester City at Old Trafford.
He left behind the champions, with a transfer kitty which has already seen £80 million spent and plenty more available this summer. What more could a new manager desire?
United, who won the Premier League by nine points last season, are 12 points behind fourth-placed Arsenal ahead of their clash against Aston Villa on Saturday.
“Nemanja Vidic, Patrice Evra and Rio Ferdinand are coming to the end of their careers, but the playing staff is packed with high quality, young talent,” Owen wrote in his Daily Telegraph column.
“It is still a title-winning squad that now includes Juan Mata, a player most managers covet.
“If they were not going to go close to defending their crown this season, they should at least have been in the top four.”
Owen also rubbished the suggestion that Ferguson was to blame for United’s current predicament after leaving a decaying squad behind.
“He left behind the champions, with a transfer kitty which has already seen £80 million spent and plenty more available this summer. What more could a new manager desire? It was not a tainted legacy but a perfect one,” Owen continued.
“There is too much revisionism claiming United only won the league because of the failings of everyone else. How about we stick to the facts. United won 89 points last season. This year’s title winners will do well to beat that.”
Owen continued: “Sir Alex’s recommendation to the board to recruit Moyes was widely supported at the time, myself included.
“No one foresaw how this season would go and no matter how much work is required to rebuild the squad, there is no way they should be struggling in seventh position. We can all identify the problems.”
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