Manchester United manager David Moyes is once again a figure of fun and derision across the country this afternoon, following a frankly embarrassing late collapse to concede a stoppage-time equaliser in Sunday's 2-2 draw at Fulham.
Moyes is ultimately responsible for United's results and will carry the can for more points dropped inexplicably at Old Trafford, but it's very hard to see what more the Scot could have done in terms of team selection.
Arguably Adnan Januzaj or Antonio Valencia could have started on the flanks, but the exciting attacking trio of Juan Mata, Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney were all included to the approval of most Red Devils fans.
When the defending Premier League champions fail to beat the division's bottom club alarm bells are bound to be ringing in terms of tactics and potential team selection, but United fans should be most concerned with a lack of motivation from some stars to take responsibility for their disappointing campaign to date.
United largely have the same squad that romped to Premier League success in clinical, comfortable fashion last term, so perhaps it is time for Moyes to call on mentor Sir Alex Ferguson to remind some of his players just what it means to represent one of world football's biggest clubs.
Ferguson was famed for his authoritative style and ruled with an iron first, always demanding more from the Red Devils and driving the club forward so that sitting back and enjoying past success was never an option.
Moyes was hand-picked by Ferguson as his successor, so surely it is time for the veteran coach to ease his protege's woes with a direct message to under-fire United stars that they must give everything for the beleaguered boss, rather than being content with a watching brief from the stands.
United are going through a short-term crisis and may need Fergie to intervene directly before Wednesday's crunch trip to Old Trafford, particularly with the gap from fourth-placed Liverpool now a whopping nine points.
Champions League football is an absolute necessity for United in terms of attracting players and building again for next season, but seems to be slipping through their grasp thanks primarily due to poor home form.
Ferguson has attempted to stay a silent, influential supporter of Moyes at Old Trafford this season, but if he allows his chosen replacement to keep floundering without providing help and support then that stance is bordering on negligence.
Rather than leaving Moyes hanging out to dry in terms of fan support and public perception Ferguson should offer a practical, short-terms solutions to problems he is all too familiar with, particularly in his early days as Red Devils chief.
Now I'm not for a moment suggesting that Ferguson should come riding to the rescue and reclaim the manager's throne, but Sir Alex has retained a position of power at United for a reason and should do everything he can to ensure senior players at the club show Moyes their support on and off the pitch.
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