What a difference a week can make in football.
At the end of November, things were looking up for Manchester United and their manager David Moyes. A 5-0 victory at Bayer Leverkusen was United's biggest away win in the Champions League since a 6-0 demolition of Shamrock Rovers back in 1957.
The eye-catching result also extended the Red Devils' unbeaten run to 11 matches, while they made it 12 games unbeaten five days later courtesy of a 2-2 draw against Tottenham in the Premier League.
However, within the space of four days, the world has been turned upside down for the shell-shocked Moyes.
Back-to-back home Premier League defeats against his former club Everton and Newcastle have surely left United out of the title race, while even a top-four finish is starting to look a little touch-and-go for the club who have never finished outside of the top three positions since the Premier League was formed in 1992.
That remarkable record could come to an end this season. For twenty-one consecutive years, Sir Alex Ferguson led United to a series of first, second and third-placed finishes in the Premier League.
But in Moyes' debut season at Old Trafford, there's a realistic chance that United could drop out of the Champions League places altogether.
This is worst-case scenario stuff for the former Everton boss who, at times, has looked out of his depth in the Old Trafford dugout.
It was always going to take time for Moyes to settle - after all, he was replacing the most successful manager in British football history - but a top-four finish is the absolute bare minimum he should achieve this season given the squad at his disposal and the budget available to him.
Moyes took the decision to spend £27.5m on Marouane Fellaini after missing out on the likes of Cesc Fabregas and Thiago Alcantara, but the Belgium international has played a bit-part role since his big-money move, and has struggled to make the transition from Everton to Manchester United - much like his manager.
There's still plenty of time for Moyes to resolve the club's problems and secure that vital top-four finish. However, the chances of that happening diminish significantly every time United suffer another confidence-crushing defeat, as their rival top-four contenders pull away further at the top of the table.
If Manchester United - who are, remember, the reigning champions of England - finish in fifth, sixth or, whisper it, even lower in the table, then it won't be down to the club to sack the Scot - paying off the remainder of his six-year contract in the process.
Instead, it'll be down to him to do the honourable thing by holding his hands up and admitting he simply isn't cut out for the job.
He will back himself to get it right, while the Manchester United supporters will continue to stick by him and the team, but the situation is becoming increasingly desperate.
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