THE sight of Old Trafford’s new transfer guru sitting in a pub hosting a strategy meeting with the Red Army confirms what many are already suspecting.
Manchester United is now a pub team.
Young CEO Richard Arnold was informed of the presence of a mob of p****d-off supporters planning another anti-Glazer protest, so he rushed to his pub to give them a round.
The secret filming gave him a Panorama-like sense that this was a meeting not meant to happen.
A modern-day Roger Cook, secretly chronicling a drug deal or discussing tactics with a secret swingers cult in the Cheshire suburbs.
If Arnold’s contacts in the transfer market were anywhere near as good as his hoolie-spotting buddies, then things wouldn’t seem so bad.
But Arnold’s impromptu pow-wow was the only talk at the self-proclaimed “biggest club in the world,” which also appears to be winning the title of “worst run.”
Arnold’s predecessor, Ed Woodward, stayed as far away from the Hoi Polloi as possible, ultimately out of fear for his safety.
But it’s hard to imagine Peter Kenyon, Martin Edwards or legendary chef Sir Alex Ferguson dropping everything at home to run and quell a barking mob with two dozen bottles of WKD and a few packets of roast pork.
That’s how low United have sunk under the Glazers’ loathed possession.
FREE BETS AND SIGN UP OFFERS – THE BEST DEALS FOR NEW CUSTOMERS
The botched transfer policy, which looks from the outside as if it were regularly drawn up on beer mats, only recently reached an embarrassing peak.
Paul Pogba, Juan Mata, Edinson Cavani, Nemanja Matic and Jesse Lingard have all left without a penny in transfer fees.
Just look at how, most importantly, midfielder Pogba is suddenly reborn as a world-class player wherever he rocks next.
Matic is already anchored at Roma under Jose Mourinho and Lingard is wanted by West Ham and Newcastle.
Arnold, we’re told, is a die-hard United fan.
Coming from Chelmsford it makes sense.
To his credit, he is considered a completely normal fan who feels just as at home in the lounge as in the VIP boxes.
Fair play for him for taking on the angry mob sick of watching his one-time titan of a club quietly walk away from any sense of belonging to the game’s elite.
But there’s a feeling United are already staring at another wasted year with the new season still six weeks away.
It’s not uncommon these days for Old Trafford to be as quiet as a church on matchdays, but the silence on transfers is even more alarming.
AJAX THE HUNTING AREA
If Christian Eriksen, 30, a man who suffered cardiac arrest on pitch, is torn between signing for a club with a 75,000 stadium capacity or tiny Brentford, then something is wrong.
New coach Erik ten Hag has so far shown little imagination as to how he intends to rebuild a squad in dire need of refurbishment.
As the hipster’s choice, we expected a long list of sophisticated playmakers, ballers and little-known stars in the making known only to the Dutchman and his intricate network of contacts.
Instead, United appear to be limited to chasing after ex-Ajax players who, like Eriksen, don’t seem keen to play for a club wallowing in past glory after failing to win the league since 2013, with no end in sight is.
Frenkie de Jong, Antony, Lisandro Martinez, and Jurrien Timber. All are either still playing for or former players from Ten Hag’s old club.
Sam Allardyce ran a management tour of England with Kevin Nolan for years, using the same tactics.
Unless Ten Hag pulls his finger out and finds someone willing to play for the 13-time Premier League champions, these fans will be back at the pub every weekend.
And Arnold will end up with the biggest beer belly in English football.
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/5628879/manchester-united-richard-arnold-erik-ten-hag/ Many thought Man Utd were already a pub team – Richard Arnold meeting and Erik ten Hag transfer policy bear that out