Blogs & Opinion


Gary Neville: Manchester United woes can't all be solved with money

Gary Neville - Gary Neville Posted 26th March 2014 view comments

Gary Neville says a summer spending spree is not necessarily the solution to David Moyes' problems at Manchester United.

The champions' demoralising season suffered a fresh setback at Old Trafford on Tuesday night as they were comfortably beaten 3-0 by Manchester City, a result which sees them fall 15 points behind their neighbours despite having played two more games.

Fellaini: summer signing looks on as City celebrate

Fellaini: summer signing looks on as City celebrate

That prompted former United right-back Neville to question a recruitment policy which has seen them sign the likes of Wilfried Zaha (£15m), Marouane Fellaini (£27.5m) and Juan Mata (£37m) in the last 15 months - despite being linked with world-class talents like Cesc Fabregas, Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Sky Sports expert says there are obvious weaknesses throughout Moyes' current team, particularly in defence and midfield, but that the manager must be careful to make the right signings when he goes back into the market.

"The worrying thing is people think the right answer is just to go and chuck another £150million at it," Neville said.

"But it's almost like you've got to know what's wrong with the soup before you throw more ingredients in to make it better - and at the moment I'm not quite sure where you'd start.

Risk-takers

"The defence does not push up the pitch, they're not front-foot defensively, while in midfield you need pressure and drive and they haven't got that.

"They are not risk-takers in midfield so the passing is slow at times. Ryan Giggs is the first midfielder, in the Olympiakos game last week, that I've seen pass the ball forwards.

"Up front I think they've got good players, but it's where you fit them in and how you position them together. Moyes has got some work to do in working that out over the next few months.

"The idea that United need to spend a load of money is very well. They've got money, but they have spent £80million already on Zaha, Fellaini and Mata in the last eight or nine months.

"City have spent £100m and people in this area say they have spent a load of money, well United have spent a load of money as well.

"So it's not going to be a case of just throwing a load of money at it. They've got to get the actual signings right and get the recruitment right.

"In the summer they wanted players of the quality of Fabregas, Bale, [Leighton] Baines and Ronaldo. Those types would have been fantastic and would have given everybody a lift.

"They didn't end up getting them and that was the problem."

Power

City's derby win has reaffirmed Neville's belief that Manuel Pellegrini's side - now three points behind leaders Chelsea with two games in hand - are the favourites for this season's Premier League title.

And despite having tough trips to Arsenal, Liverpool and Everton to come he expects the title race to be a hard-fought battle between City and Chelsea.

Neville added: "I think Liverpool have done brilliantly well, but I think City and Chelsea have got more power, strength and experience and in the end that will count.

"City will get confidence from tonight and I think they'll beat Arsenal on Saturday. I'd be amazed if they didn't.

"The trip to Liverpool is a big game, but you'd say it's as difficult for Liverpool as it will be for City. Anfield is a tough place to go for any team.

"But you've seen Manchester City tonight. They are strong, powerful and they've got goals from different areas of the pitch.

"They are keeping clean sheets at the moment, even though you still suspect that potentially is an area that's weak for them, the centre of defence.

"You'd have to say Martín Demichelis and Vincent Kompany were outstanding tonight and I would say they will go forwards and win the league.

"But that's with not with any great certainty. I wouldn't go rushing to the bookies or anything like that!"

back to top

Other Football Experts:

Latest Posts in Football:

Jamie Redknapp

Redknapp: No chance for Liverpool

Jamie Redknapp says Liverpool can't realistically hope to win the Premier League this season....

Jeff Stelling

Jeff: Resting players is costly

Why are clubs resting their stars in crucial games? It's costing them three points, says Jeff Stelling....

Jamie Carragher

Carragher: Which Blues are best?

Jamie Carragher reveals which Man City wizard and which Chelsea talisman he would have in his team....

Latest News RSS feeds

Liverpool undone at Upton Park

West Ham United netted twice inside the opening seven minutes en route to a 3-1 victory over Liverpool at Upton Park.

Arsenal blitz shatters Villa

Aston Villa’s unbeaten start to the season was ended by a devastating goal blitz as Arsenal enjoyed a 3-0 away win.

Cisse double saves Newcastle

Substitute Papiss Cisse saved the day for Newcastle and under-fire manager Alan Pardew in their 2-2 draw with Hull City.

Wanyama downs 10-man Swans

Victor Wanyama broke the resistance of 10-man Swansea as Southampton left the Liberty Stadium with a 1-0 win.

Burnley held by Sunderland

Burnley and Sunderland are both still looking for their first wins of the season after a 0-0 draw at Turf Moor.

Features

Mesut Ozil – Aston Villa 0 Arsenal 3: What did you think of German World Cup winner in Premier League win?

Mesut Ozil – Aston Villa 0 Arsenal 3: What did you think of German World Cup winner in Premier League win?

One minute and 19 seconds. That was the time it took for a transformation in the appraisals of Mesut Ozil.

Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois adjusting to life in the Premier League

Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois adjusting to life in the Premier League

Thibaut Courtois spoke exclusively to Soccer Saturday and described how he's finding life in the Premier League.

Sergio Aguero and Diego Costa were Atletico Madrid team-mates but their routes to the top have been so different

Sergio Aguero and Diego Costa were Atletico Madrid team-mates but their routes to the top have been so different

With 64 goals between them last season, Sergio Aguero and Diego Costa are two of the game’s best strikers. Born just three months apart on opposite sides of the Argentina-Brazil border, they were even team-mates at Atletico Madrid. But the pair have taken very different routes to the top.