It’s fair to say Manchester United, and David Moyes in particular, have endured a somewhat difficult start to the new season.
Last weekend’s humiliating 4-1 defeat at the hands of Manchester City left many questioning the side and the manager’s credentials as genuine title contenders for the Premier League crown.
Although performances have been under par, given the difficult set of fixtures United have had to face, it’s far too early to be judging Moyes and his team, with the next few weeks offering a great chance to put their recent lows behind him.
Trips to the Etihad, Anfield and Swansea, as well as a home game with Chelsea, would have been difficult for anyone in this division, including former boss Sir Alex Ferguson. And although seven points from five games is far from ideal, given the circumstances, it’s hardly a crisis.
Wednesday’s Capital One Cup tie with Liverpool, took on greater importance after Sunday’s dismal display. A reaction was needed, and a positive result the demand from the fans.
Javier Hernandez scored the only goal of the game, with a 1-0 win coming as a welcome relief to the red side of Manchester.
A battling display, saw United earn a hard-fought clean sheet, and with a side that contained eight changes from their previous outing, one that highlighted the strength and depth Moyes has at his disposal.
Many seem to be forgetting that United still have the same set of players that saw them storm to their twentieth League title last season. Although the arrival of Marouane Fellaini was the only notable addition to the squad during the summer, the margin of victory come May 2013, was enough to suggest radical changes weren't required.
With a number of young players such as Rafael, Phil Jones, and Chris Smalling all benefiting from the experience they gain every game, the side can only keep improving.
The resurgence of Wayne Rooney is also another huge positive for the Red Devils, with the England forward United’s star man in the early part of the new campaign.
Rooney’s all round performances have caught the eye, and the striker is regularly finding himself on the score sheet, showing how vital it was for United to keep hold of him during the transfer window.
A great start to the Champions League campaign, a safe passage to the next round of the League Cup, and still only five points off the top of the league after a difficult start, there are plenty of reasons for United fans to remain optimistic.
With a number of winnable fixtures on the horizon, starting with the visit of West Bromwich Albion at Old Trafford this weekend, come December there is no reason why the Red Devils won’t find themselves challenging at the top of the league.
For United, the season starts here.
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