‘It’s ten years of mismanagement’ – Souness names two decisions that sum up Man Utd decline

Date published: Tuesday 26th July 2022 12:32 - Joe Williams

Graeme Souness speaks about Man Utd

Liverpool legend Graeme Souness thinks Man Utd must “improve their footballing decisions” if they are to become a force in English football again.

The Red Devils have suffered since Sir Alex Ferguson left the club in 2013 after 27 years at the Old Trafford helm.

Last season was one of the lowest points since the Scot went into retirement as Man Utd could only manage a sixth-placed finish despite bringing Cristiano Ronaldo, Raphael Varane and Jadon Sancho to the club last summer.

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The Red Devils have brought in Erik ten Hag to turn the ship around this summer with the Dutchman boosted by the signings of Tyrell Malacia, Christian Eriksen and Lisandro Martinez, with more to come.

And Ten Hag is convinced he will be a success, he said recently: “I must say, I have a strong belief. This is a big challenge, but until now everywhere I’ve been I’ve got the maximum out of my teams.

“This is the project that is the most difficult, I realise that, but I am here, so I am convinced that I can do it.

“The first target is to win every game, that has to be our approach, that belongs to Man United.

“It is a pleasure, that’s why I took it, I know it’s not an easy job but that gives me some joy and energy, that together with all the people around, to make a unified co-operation. That has to be the platform for success.”

But Souness still thinks they are “a country mile away” from challenging for a Premier League title with their decisions to offer Juan Mata and Phil Jones new contracts in the past summing up the terrible decisions taking by the hierarchy.

“The problem they have is they’re so poor in so many areas. That’s a problem for those making the decisions at the football club,” Souness told Sky Bet.

“If you’re a big player, do you go to Manchester United? I mean, they’ve had a decade of just poor footballing decisions.

“It’s not just the players they’ve bought – which is the easy thing to focus on – but when you look at making decisions like giving Phil Jones a new contract, giving Juan Mata a new contract, and you think things might be different next year…

“And then you talk about the players they’ve signed over the last decade, tell me one who’s been a stand-out, one who makes you go wow. It’s ten years of mismanagement.

“For Manchester United, it’s not about the top four, it’s about challenging for the title. They’re a country mile away from that.

“Yes, they’ll be better, but whoever is making the decisions going forward needs to get them right. They’ve got to improve their footballing decisions, who they keep and who they recruit.”


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