DAVID Moyes looked like a happy man on Saturday evening: United had just won so well he might. There was an important first, David Moyes won a league match with Manchester United and although that sounds small, it really wasn’t. Except to anyone else but him.
The knives were out and sharpened before Saturday night, as far back as the league fixtures annoucement. People are waiting for him to fail, they’d be happy with a stumble or two but they’d be practically orgasmic with failure. The fixtures in the opening weeks give the vultures a few chances for a stumble and paragraphs are probably already ready to be pasted in. Moyes gave a post match interview that acknowledged how important the win was but made light of the weight it could have carried. He was correct, he had won games of football with Everton and had to do the same thing with his new team, albeit more frequently now. He showed and has shown remarkable level headedness because if you listen to some it’s a wonder he gets out of bed to go to work. He replaced an institution and is never going to live up to those previous heights, it seems that for his sanity and his career, it’s best not to go near that legacy and instead do a Fleetwood Mac. Go your own way.
Yes we know it’s on a scale he knows nothing about but he has bitter European dissapoinrment, he has fostered great team spirit and he has managed in a city where the team across the city were on there local perch. Add to that the fact he can pull a good face on the sidelines and gives Geoff Shreeves a jokey stern talking to and he’s doing okay. He doesn’t need any more pressure, he’s doing well to act like there is none on him at all. The pressure he has is that which he always, he is surrounded by people who are steeped in the tradition of Manchester United, it is okay to leaver that to them and get on with his job.
As for Saturday, Swansea played well but not for the first time Robin Van Persie did enough to make the difference, his impact allowed the rest of the team the time and space to go on and get the job done. Danny Welbeck made a great start and his second goal was as delightful as any you will see this month. Part of me thinks David Moyes is on a hiding to nothing unless he wins every game in his first month by three clear goals or some similarly crushing margin. If United had beaten Swansea only by the two quick goals in the first half, people would have been saying well yeah but we weren’t convincing enough, in fact there will still be some this week who are of this opinion. It was three points, we move on and we go again.
Put eleven players on the pitch every time they are required, the challenge will take care of itself.
‘We have gained some confidence from this result, but it’s only the first game. It is just the beginning.’
So says Pat Evra, so say all of us, GTS