Gary Neville has blamed Manchester United’s struggles on the owners of the club, claiming that manager Jose Mourinho should be given at least some slack because of the failure from the board to back him.
The former-Manchester United captain has slammed the club’s owners, the Glazer family, and the executive vice chairman, Ed Woodward.
Neville believes that Mourinho should have been given more funds in the transfer market in the summer to strengthen his side in the manner that rivals Manchester City and Liverpool did.
Man United, of course, have spent a great deal of money in the last few seasons, including in the summer where they signed Brazilian midfielder Fred for around £50 million and young Portuguese right back Diogo Dalot for almost £20 million.
That’s not enough, though, according to Neville.
“It took a lot for me to be critical of Ed Woodward but I felt as though it was needed,” Neville said, speaking of his Sky Sports rant on the United chief a couple of weeks ago, while in conversation with the excellent United fanzine, Red News.
“I think that when you don’t support the manager in the transfer market – and it’s quite obvious that Jose Mourinho wasn’t supported – it’s a very dangerous road to go down.”
Mourinho was reportedly desperate for defensive reinforcements in the summer. A number of targets were rumoured to be of great interest to the Portugeuse coach, including Premier League centre-backs Harry Maguire and Toby Alderweireld.
A couple of seasons ago, United haggled too much for Imter Milan winger Ivan Perisic and ended up missing out on him altogether.
This is in contract to at City where Pep Guardiola has spent even more than United, with some of his back-up players costing around £50 million.
Neville also believes that there is a mix-up of players in the United side because of the number of managers recently.
“At United, the problem is that you have got a team built by four different managers,” Neville explained.
“From the recruitment, to the succession planning, the pin-ball of moving from one value of manager to another: from Moyes, to Van Gaal, and now Mourinho; there is no consistency of approach. So, my view is that it stems back to the owners.”
Neville is right to blame the owners. Their investment has been minuscule and, while United should be doing better and Mourinho must take some blame, if they really want to compete with City and other European heavyweights, they must spend more.