Ex-defender Rio Ferdinand has insisted that Manchester United must stop leaking internal problems to the media if they are to have any success as a team.
The Englishman was a model professional in the latter years of his Man United career and was part of the most successful era in the club’s history. United won five Premier League titles out of seven seasons at one point in Ferdinand’s time, and also reached three UEFA Champions League finals during that period.
It was a time of dedication, commitment, quality and teamwork. It is a time that seems so far removed from today. Manager Jose Mourinho is now embroiled in a battle with the club’s owners, as well as with star midfielder Paul Pogba. Other internal issues have been constantly document in the press over the last few years, whether it’s been between Louis van Gaal and his players not reading his emails or Mourinho and Pogba.
Ferdinand insisted all these issues must be kept inside the club to keep an air of professionalism and respect.
“What we saw on the training pitch the other day, I didn’t experience that when we were playing,” Ferdinand said.
“You deal with things like that in the training ground, far too many things are coming out the training ground and United fans aren’t used to that.”
“The club is more important than anyone, not just the players, the manager as well. They have to always bear in mind the club has to be respected at every moment.”
“The manager knows the camera is there. We’ve been in changing rooms where there’s been fights. You come outside, you know the cameras are there, you shut up and get on with it.”
Both manager and players are not currently respecting the club’s values. However, the board appear to have no desire to continue the club’s values. In 2014, they sacked David Moyes after just eight months as manager. In 2016, reports leaked that the club were to appoint Mourinho as van Gaal’s successor as the Dutchman was walking up to lift the FA Cup for United.
No one inside the club has control over it and it’s a mess throughout. Paul Scholes described it as a “war”. It must be sorted out, but there seems no desire to make things right.