This has been a bad month in the transfer window for Manchester United, and an average one on the pitch.
The club has registered just one Premier League win out of four, and are almost out of the Carabao Cup before the second leg. The FA Cup run is the only saving grace.
The poor results have shone a spotlight on a pathetically co-ordinated transfer window which currently threatens to end with United signing no players.
This has increased the spotlight on under performing chief executive Ed Woodward.
Woodward has been silent throughout the month, unlike the month of October when he spoke buoyantly to fanzine United We Stand.
A look back at his comments three months on paint a picture of a deluded man in charge at Old Trafford.
Featured online by BBC Sport, Woodward had a one word answer when asked if he was still the right man to lead United: “Yes”.
Woodward went on to boast: “We are financially strong. We are self-sustaining. We don’t have an umbilical cord that we are concerned about. There’s negativity about us doing sponsorship deals but they allow us to do things in the transfer market which other clubs struggle to do.”
Then he went on to add brazenly, “We absolutely feel we are on the right track to getting back to winning trophies.”
All talk no action
Woodward’s comments would look comical if they were not so rage inducing and infuriating for United supporters.
No club England’s Premier League are jealous of what Manchester United have done this transfer window.
United might have made progress in cup competitions, but in the Premier League, the Red Devils are further off than ever.
Liverpool’s points tally may be a freak season, but the facts remain they have 67 points already, just one way from doubling our number, 34.
United are getting further away from competing for the title, not closer.
And Woodward said in the same interview, that’s all that matters.
He added: “We have to do everything we possibly can to get back to winning the Premier League. We are not successful until we do. Second is not success – we have to win the Premier League.”
United are not going to get near to winning the title at this pace of rebuild.
While patience is required, just six players signed in four transfer windows (one of which was Lee Grant), is not good enough.
United do not seem serious, and until Woodward recognises he is not the man to lead the revival, it is hard to realistically imagine the club reaching the heights once taken for granted by many.
Fernandes deal won’t change anything
United are still attempting to close a move for Bruno Fernandes before deadline.
The Times report United were left scrambling on Tuesday after reports Barcelona could buy him.
United could yet pull victory from the jaws of defeat, but this will not be much of a win for Woodward.
This transfer window has been disorganised, and it would have been far simpler to just meet the asking price for Fernandes early and then chase other targets.
United were supposed to have a plan, act decisively, and be a club other teams want to follow. Woodward would save face in the media if a deal does get done, but he won’t win many supporters over.
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