Vidic: We lost belief in team

Departing Manchester United captain Nemanja Vidic admits "everyone lost belief in the team" during their disappointing season.

Last Updated: 14/05/14 at 17:54 Post Comment

David Moyes and Nemanja Vidic: Both now departed from Old Trafford

David Moyes and Nemanja Vidic: Both now departed from Old Trafford

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Vidic, who is joining Inter Milan this summer, insists former manager David Moyes - sacked before the season ended after less than a year in charge - was not solely to blame, and he revealed the players argued amongst themselves more than any other year in his career at Old Trafford.

Moyes succeeded Sir Alex Ferguson as manager last summer on a six-year contract but was sacked last month, United eventually finishing 22 points behind table-topping Manchester City and failing to qualify for Europe.

It was not the way Vidic wanted to end his otherwise glittering, trophy-filled eight-and-a-half-year career at the club.

But he says that whoever had succeeded Sir Alex Ferguson would have had a difficult job imposing their will on the squad.

"There was a transition," he told the Telegraph. "You get someone who sees football in a different way and he will want to put his stamp on the team and the way he wants to pay.

"Ryan Giggs shares the same ideas as Sir Alex Ferguson and has a more similar approach to the one we had with Sir Alex. The players are more than used to it and felt more comfortable with it.

"I am not saying that the David Moyes way was bad but these players feel more comfortable playing a certain way of football. You have to respect where you are and what you represent though, and there is no point speaking about someone who was here, who everyone knows lost his job because he did not succeed in doing what he wanted to achieve.

"The best answer I can say is that he tried really hard, he was professional. He was really committed to the job and desperately wanted to do well. But unfortunately, it didn't happen and we are all sad."

Vidic insisted there was no attempt to undermine Moyes - they did what they were told - but admitted there were serious arguments between the players.

"Sometimes you have bad times and you question yourself, of course, but we never did question the manager. We questioned ourselves more," he said.

"It has been hard. We thought it might be difficult to win the title this year but we still thought we would challenge for the trophies. We ended up losing the chance to win the title very early though, and then we lost the chance to win the cups as well.

"We are used to fighting until the last day of the season for the title. That has happened for the last seven years and this year was the first year we have not done that, so it is hard to cope.

"We argued amongst ourselves. This year more than any other, because when you have bad times people show they care. We were arguing to get better. We wanted to improve.

"If you didn't argue it wouldn't be right. We had some hard moments in the dressing room between ourselves."

"He lost the dressing room" is a common cliche but is pretty meaningless. van Gaal will likely make enemies of anyone who doesn't like his training methods and game tactics but United surely wouldn't soon sack another manager who "lost the dressing room". No, in the case of the new manager, those unsettled in the United dressing room will simply be shown the door which, had Moyes been the long established international manager United needed, he would have done too. van Gaal will have no time for whinging players on huge salaries - he'll insist on hard graft and allegiance to his tried and tested successful methods not United's old ways of playing under Sir Alex. He could perhaps also remind them that they're there to entertain and win things for those who have paid plenty to see United play. It'll certainly be interesting as van Gaal creates a new dressing room culture and and new way of playing too. Of course I'm assuming that van Gaal gets the job. Maybe United have a bigger surprise for us by appointing Manager of the Year from Palace.
- dactyl

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C

lassic management. Build them up and then knock them back. Raise expectations and then dampen them. Create a dynamic where by you demand the most from your team, but where the team are given room to manoeuvre unexpected or unwanted results. Classy work by Van Gaal, he really reminds me a lot of me. A smart cookie, make no doubt.

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e will be the England left back for ten years or more, and then you will have to thank MUFC for that. *smiles*

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Shaw: Criticism spot on

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urely because of that little diva moment he had last night, I don't want him coming to my club. DESTROYED ? Grow up and give something back to the club that helped put you up there on the world stage.

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