Manchester United are stood at a crossroad, and they don’t know which way to turn. Can anyone get them heading in the right direction, and with so much at stake, what will the fallout be?
This is a very proud club, one that is among the world’s elite in terms of revenue and off the field activities. Back in the 90s and the early 2000’s, they had a team and characters on the field that matched those lofty achievements off the field, and trophies arrives on a regular basis.
Now we have the same off field brand working hard to continue pushing things, but the football on the field is some way behind. United are a massive name in world football, but last season they fell out of the top four and this season they have started with just two wins from six games. A recent 2-0 defeat at West Ham highlighted their problems further, and something needs to be done.
But what exactly is the next step forward?
The club are promoting youth at the moment, and with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as manager they have someone the fans like and someone who wants youngsters to be the future. Do they sacrifice immediate success and back Solskjaer to deliver in the long term when his youngsters have the required experience and talent? That would potentially give them a spell where they are no longer a top six team, something that would hit their fan base hard, and cost money in their off-the-field activities.
If they go this way, it is a massive risk to take and if it doesn’t work out, the period without success could easily lengthen to a decade, or maybe even longer which is not the kind of thoughts that United fans will enjoy.
Is Money the Answer?
United have spent just under £900 million in recent years, so it is fair to say that money hasn’t given them the answer in that period. Will it provide answers if they spend even more? This is a squad that is seriously lacking both in talent and depth right now compared to their rivals, and if they want immediate success then United have to spend and bring players in that can help them compete.
It would go against what Solskjaer is trying to do, and would prevent youngsters who are getting chances at the moment to get the same should it come in. However, to some people immediate success is required to get this club back on track, no matter what the cost or the implications are in the future.
Whichever way United go, it will divide the fan base and upset some people. However, it would give them something to aim for, and some way of having expectations for the current season and beyond. At the moment with no official plan in place, no path for success, all the club is doing right now is treading water, and for a team as big as this, treading water is simply not acceptable.