Following the shambles that was Manchester United's performance on the pitch at Anfield, United manager David Moyes and partner-in-crime Ed Woodward put in a shambolic performance off the pitch on transfer deadline day as they desperately sought to bring in targets that they'd had the whole summer to procure.

Moyes has been somewhat saved by the fact that he has been able to have a bit of a break; the international calendar has meant that since the transfer window slammed shut the Scot has been able to remain mainly out of the public eye.  However, the international games are over now, and attention shifts once again to United's mediocre start and their diabolical performance in the transfer market.

In the end Moyes was only able to bring in one new face - midfielder Marouane Fellaini; and even that signing has not endeared him to the Old Trafford faithful. 

Fellaini, a great player he is, though, he's also no Cesc Fabregas or Thiago Alacantara, and United fans will not be impressed that the purchase of the Belgian is the sum total of their transfer dealings; particularly given that according to The Express, the combative midfielder could have been purchased for around £4 million less than the eventual fee.

Moyes must now concentrate on getting things right on the pitch, and the week to come signifies perhaps his biggest week as Manchester United manager so far.

United welcome newly-promoted Crystal Palace to the Theatre of Dreams on Saturday, knowing that only a win is acceptable. 

The Red Devils' have put in two listless performances in their last two games - the first an uninspiring and drab goalless draw with Chelsea, the other that loss to arch-rivals Liverpool. 

Moyes will know that the Old Trafford faithful will now expect nothing less than a win; and a good win at that, one that shows the fans and the media that the Scot is the man to take the club forward in the wake of Sir Alex Ferguson's retirement.

Standing in the Scot's way is Ian Holloway; the savvy Bristolian certainly capable of making things difficult for United.  Holloway has the ability to make his teams difficult to beat, but Manchester United must overcome the Eagles if they are to be regarded as serious title contenders. 

The mediocre performances on and off the pitch have done little to dispel the doubts that have been surrounding Moyes ever since he took the job, and a loss or even a draw on Saturday could have catastrophic effects on the confidence of the United squad.

Following the Palace match, United will need to throw themselves straight into preparation for their first Champions League match when they host Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday.  The German team are no pushovers - finishing a point beyond Borussia Dortmund last season - and given Moyes' lack of experience in Europe's premier cup competition, Tuesday's game is going to be a massive challenge. 

In one week, David Moyes could rebuild his reputation.  An emphatic victory against Palace, followed by another against Bayer Leverkusen would restore confidence in the fans unsure as to whether the Scot is the right man for the job. 

Defeat in either game would strike another blow as Moyes attempts to get comfortable in the hottest seat in world football.

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Topics:
Manchester United
Football
Crystal Palace