Former Manchester United star Gary Neville expressed sympathy for the current players, citing the ‘cultural toxicity’ that he believes exists at the club.
Neville’s comments come in the wake of United’s disappointing 3-0 defeat to local rivals Manchester City, which left them with five losses in their opening ten Premier League matches.
Neville argued that even the famed ‘Class of 92’, which included himself, Ryan Giggs, David Beckham and Paul Scholes, would have struggled in the current environment at the club.
He said (via his podcast): “These are not bad lads in this dressing room, but there is a real feeling of low [morale] at the club.
“If we [the Class of 92] had come into the club at this moment in time, in this environment, we wouldn’t be successful.
“If they came into this environment today, they would be set up for failure. I don’t blame these players anymore.”
Neville emphasised that the issues extend beyond the current group of players, pointing out that even talented individuals like Bruno Fernandes are negatively affected by the environment.
He expressed concern that if the ‘cultural toxicity’ under the Glazers continues, manager Erik ten Hag may suffer the same fate as his predecessors.
“Erik ten Hag is a fantastic coach,” Neville added. “We know that. We can’t dispute that.
“Jose Mourinho is a fantastic coach. We can’t dispute that. What we have to dispute is why they keep failing at this football club. Answer that question.
“It’s not because of one player or their [managerial] ability. They can all take the responsibility, the medicine and say: ‘I didn’t achieve what I wanted to achieve’. But it’s about cultural failure, and that’s it.
“Another manager will be put under more problems. I don’t think Ten Hag had a great day today. Ultimately, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Jose Mourinho and Louis van Gaal had many bad days.”
Neville addressed the uncertainty surrounding Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s potential involvement at Manchester United as part of a £1.3 billion deal for a minority stake.
Ratcliffe’s proposal to form a football committee with Joel Glazer and Sir Dave Brailsford has raised concerns among the club’s staff.
Neville humorously commented: “Imagine what all those people in that football department think – they’re all unsure. And we need Daniel Radcliffe, not Jim Ratcliffe!”
His assessment of United’s struggles shines a light on the ongoing challenges faced by the team.
They continue to struggle in the Premier League, with questions regarding ownership and leadership lingering, leaving fans and pundits alike wondering about the club’s future.
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