Football

Evra shouldn't be the only United regular flogged this year

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It now seems almost a foregone conclusion that long-serving Patrice Evra will be let go by United at the end of the current year, to make room for Leighton Baines.

Whilst the cut-throat sale of a man who has performed admirably for the Premier League champions for the best part of eight years isn't something that would have been considered the norm in years gone by at the club, it's one that I believe is a step in the right direction if Moyes wants to stabilise his squad in the long-run.

Regardless of the pros and cons of Baines coming in as a replacement, it's the potential decision to flog Evra that ticks the box for me.

It's fair to say that there are a number of players in the current United squad that are capable of still playing a high standard, but in my opinion should be moved on from the club.

At the moment the side that Sir Alex Ferguson took to the title at a brisk walk is struggling to adapt to life under Moyes, but rather than it being a fault of the manager, I think it's purely a case of Moyes needing to take the squad and make it his own.

The likes of Rio Ferdinand, Nani and Ashley Young have come to a crossroads in their careers at Old Trafford, and for differing reasons don't warrant a place in a team that is looking to challenge on all fronts.

When Moyes is given the chance to strengthen in January he must do so with the intent to make a statement to United's nearest rivals that they are still able to attract world-class talent.

At the end of the season the new Red Devils boss has to flush out the deadwood within his ranks, and ensure that he is left with a squad that looks as good on paper as they hope to play on the pitch.

Whereas Fergie was able to take a crop of average players with one or two world beaters, and dictate them in such a way that they became in some ways better than they had any right to be, Moyes will have to take the far more conventional and modern approach of buying in recognised top class talent.

Whilst it's easy to say Evra should be shipped when they have a nailed on replacement in the form of Baines, the job will be more difficult when it comes to replacing other key members who provided the spine of a team who have dominated over the last few years. Nonetheless, it's a job that must be done right, otherwise United risk slipping into mediocrity.

Moyes has to be ruthless with the players he has at his disposal and rather than taking a typically average Ferguson squad and expecting them to still do the business, must oversee it's transition into a side that is pioneered by himself in a way that strikes fear into their opponents.

It's sure to upset many a United supporter and for the short-term getting rid of players who have consistently been superb performers over the years may have detrimental consequences. However the days when Evra and co. were thought of as stalwarts of the Premier League are over, and Moyes needs to ring the changes before United are left behind.

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Topics:
Football
Premier League
Manchester United

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