Is David Moyes becoming a forgotten man in football?
Background photo: Andy F, CC BY-SA 2.0
Getting the opportunity to manage Manchester United is a dream job for most managers. So it was for David Moyes in 2013. But then, ‘the Chosen One’ became ‘the Rejected One’ in just a matter of months. It was a manager’s nightmare. The happenings in Moyes’ managerial career since getting the sack at Old Trafford the following year suggest he is yet to recover from the bad dream.
The Scot made a name for himself in the game as a top manager after more than a decade at Everton. He got the club playing good football and even challenging for a place in Europe. Seeking a manager who could carry on with Sir Alex Ferguson’s legacy, he was considered the most suitable candidate. He ticked all the right boxes.
Yet, the faith and belief in his abilities could not inspire him to greatness as he seemed overwhelmed in such a big stage and with the stakes so high. Failure to continue with Ferguson’s winning habit led to his early exit. He then moved to Spain with Real Sociedad in 2014. Perhaps to a different league in order to be as far away from the disappointment as possible. But his time there only compounded the problem. After getting sacked again for failing to uplift the side, he returned to familiar territory.
When a manager comes out at the beginning of the season to state that his side will likely be relegated come season’s end, it’s usually surprising. The reason being that he has been put in place to help the club do the exact opposite. For me, a manager that displays such lack of belief in his side and his ability to turn things around should not be saddled with the responsibility to lead the team. In fact, that manager should be relieved of his duties. I mean who gives up before the battle even begins and expects to win?
Surprisingly, the club hierarchy at Sunderland felt that wasn’t necessary. Unfortunately, Moyes’ prophecy came true. The Black Cats were relegated at the end of the campaign in 2017 having finished bottom of the table with just 24 points collected all season. The Scottish manager promptly jumped ship by resigning as manager. The club is now struggling to secure promotion from the third tier of English football.
However, for Moyes, another chance to repair a fast deteriorating reputation came in the form of West Ham. He led the club to a 13th-place finish at the end of the 2017/18 campaign and had to vacate his post as his contract was not extended. Since then, he has been out of work. Despite the fact that several managers have been sacked and replaced, the Scot has not been in the running to fill any of them. He has become more or less a forgotten man.
But he can get back on track and put his career on upward mobility by taking a job where he can carry out a rebuilding job and take the side to greater heights. The best place to do that will be in the English Championship. Clubs like Aston Villa, West Bromwich Albion, Bermingham, Stoke City, and Bolton Wanderers are in dire need of a top rate manager that can take them back to the Premier League. Getting one of these promoted will be a good way for the former Everton gaffer to start over and convince employers at top clubs that he still has what it takes to lead a club to success.