Manchester United`s transfer deadline day descended into farce as everything that could go wrong did go wrong and Moyes and Woodard are solely to blame.
Manchester United under the auspices of Sir Alex Ferguson and Chief Executive David Gill were a renowned and formidable machine when it came to the transfer market, making some historic signings, however all that has been destroyed in a day of shameful ineptitude and `Brian Rix` farce.
All it needed was for David Moyes` trousers to fall down to finish off a day of high farce as his and Chief Executive Ed Woodward`s incompetence took centre stage as all around them were doing great deals for their clubs. On a day where just about everything they did went wrong, we need to take a proper look at what they were trying to achieve and how they should have gone about it.
Firstly, let`s look at how an experienced chief executive deals with transfer policy at other clubs. The best example I can give is Daniel Levy at Tottenham Hotspur. The way he dealt with the Gareth Bale transfer was exemplary. At no point in the negotiations was Real Madrid in charge; Levy made sure that they were chasing the player from day one until the very last day. He also extracted the very highest price for player who has had one great season at Tottenham. People would do well to remember Kaka, who went to Madrid in a hail of publicity for a record fee at the time of £65m, only to fail miserably and eventually he left Madrid for free yesterday and went back to A C Milan!
Levy did his business weeks ago before the prices were ramped up. He knows that once clubs knew that he had the Bale money they would ask for premium transfer fees, so he got his deals done beforehand, also avoiding any last minute snags on deadline day.
Compare that the Moyes and Woodward, like the end of night drunks at a party trying to get off with any woman who looks at them.
The Fellaini deal was only done because the player took the initiative and asked for a formal transfer early last night. That forced Everton to negotiate, but even then United were made to pay £27.5m; £4m more than his original buyout clause! They could have bought him for £23.5m a few weeks ago, but let his buyout clause lapse. That is just crass bad management and ineptitude.
The Herrera deal could well be made into a movie such was the farce surrounding the so-called negotiations. First we heard that United had decided to pay the buyout clause of £30.5m. Then we heard that United officials were at the La Liga offices to pay the fee. Next we heard from Spanish correspondent Guillem Balague, that the officials were imposters and not Manchester United officials!
Now we know that they were Manchester United officials and the deal was stopped by Moyes as he got cold feet over the size of the buyout clause. Both the player and his club were left in the dark and any further attempts to sign the player in January will be met with stonewall resistance from Athletic Bilbao.
Finally, the simplest of deals, a loan deal, was fluffed by Moyes and co, as they did not get the paperwork done on time. This is surely a simple clerical procedure a temp could have got right, but not our `Dumb and Dumber` duo.
At a stroke, Moyes and Woodward have reduced the club to the status of Premier League clowns.
On a final point, Marouane Fellaini, once his initial euphoria over signing for United has died away realises that he was Moyes last resort signing, he may want to ask his new manager where he stands. Moyes and Woodward chased a number of high profile midfielders like Fabregas and Thiago without any success. Neither player wanted to join United, so why pursue them?
It remains to be seen what difference Fellaini makes to Manchester United in midfield. Trying to find a positive, they could not be any worse, so maybe he will add something.
Glazers are experienced in running sports franchises and now may be the time that they imposed themselves and appointed a director of football to deal with future transfers, before the club`s reputation is irretrievably damaged.