Manchester United have been holding a fan forum every few months to engage with the fans after the collapse of the Super League and the latest one was held recently.
It is hardly a good time to be a United fan with flailing results, an injured squad, off-the-pitch issues, and infamous owners.
Therefore, the fan forum this time was always going to be a boiling pot of frustration.
However, amid the fire, Chief Executive Richard Arnold seemed undeterred.
Arnold spoke at the fan forum where he backed the club’s “long-term” approach to squad building.
He lauded Technical Director/Director of Football John Murtough for his vision for the team which “guides our decision-making in each window”.
Richard Arnold at fans forum: "John Murtough + team have clear long-term squad strategy in place which guides our decision making in each window. We knew there'd be transition but I share frustration of playing group + fans that results haven't matched expectations so far." #MUFC
— Laurie Whitwell (@lauriewhitwell) October 13, 2023
These words will hardly be popular with an angry fanbase already that has been vocal in its demand for more strategic buys in the window instead of short-term fixes.
Last summer, United ended up signing Jonny Evans on a free transfer and although he has acquitted himself fairly well, it isn’t a very ambitious move, or long-term.
Murtough goes on to say they “sold more than usual” which enabled them to make the loan signings of Sofyan Amrabat and Sergio Reguilon.
Despite his backing for Murtough and Co., Arnold did accept that the results this season “haven’t matched expectations so far”.
He said that a transition was inevitable after the arrival of Erik ten Hag but it has been a bumpy ride, “sharing the frustration” of fans and players.
United are currently 10th in the Premier League table and bottom of their Champions League group after injuries have caused a disastrous start to the season.
Going by Arnold’s words, everybody’s job looks safe now, but alarm bells will soon start ringing if results don’t improve after injured players have returned.
Note: Full minutes of the full forum can be read here.