Sunderland were finally relegated from the Premier League at the weekend which has been inevitable with the club’s struggles over recent seasons. This has compounded misery on David Moyes who’s reputation has taken a serious hit in England during his spell as Manchester United manager and now his time in the North East only adds to this. But go back to the start of the season and the Sunderland job looked bleak for a manager to take on, told there was limited funds, the Black Cats were always going to need to rebuild heavily once more. With such a tough ask to keep them up yet again, does the drop down to the Championship really signal David Moyes is a bad manager or was it simply taking on the impossible?
When David Moyes was appointed the Manchester United job, this was an appointment taking on the highest of pressure’s, following on from Sir Alex Ferguson as the ‘chosen one’. The Scotsmen took on a very difficult job again, being left by Ferguson’s ageing and frankly poor squad, Fellaini and Mata came in as the two big transfers, both for very big money but that was all that was there to lift that squad. Here is the team that lost 4-1 to Manchester City early on in Moyes’s tenure.
This is very much an ageing and poor squad in the context of Manchester United, particularly when you look at the depth at the disposal of Moyes. A 7th place finish was to occur before Moyes got the sack with less than a season given to the former Everton boss. Is that good enough? No of course not and finishing 15 points behind a top four place is simply not good enough so ultimately Moyes had done a poor job, certainly not helped by the incredible negativity created by the media and social media alike. Louis Van Gaal and now Jose Mourinho have hardly inspired Manchester United in a league season, finishing 4th, 5th and now with Mourinho who’s been struggling to get just a top four spot all season. Consider the resources both of these managers have had and it shows what a poisoned chalice Moyes was put in charge of at the time. There’s no doubting he wasn’t the man for Old Trafford but it’s not the time to rule him out.
After doing a solid job for Real Sociedad before getting the sack for a poor start to his second campaign in Spain, Moyes’s next job would be at the Stadium of Light. To cut straight to the case they’re 13 points off safety therefore confirming their relegation. In what is a bottom half filled with such poor quality, this again means no case can be made other that stating Moyes has done a poor job. Whether Sunderland were almost destined to go down this season is another argument, they’ve fallen way too short and this has to be put down to Moyes to some degree. Again he’s had helpless resources and a squad that is simply not good enough, featuring second rate players, no balance and no quality barring Jermain Defoe and Jordan Pickford.
So, is Moyes a bad manager? I think you’d have to say he’s certainly not been a good one in recent years but looking at the context of his recent career means he’s very much been up against it from the get go. His time at Everton seems a distant memory but his next club or next campaign with Sunderland could prove decisive to me. If he were to stay on at the club it would once again be a big challenge to get them straight back up, but it would also be a more presentable opportunity to influence a club in a positive manner. I think it’s very much last chance saloon now for Moyes but that could spark a few surprises.
Do you share these thoughts? What do you think to David Moyes as a manager? Let us know in the comments below!