5 Manchester United Players Who Don't Have a Future at the Club
Manchester United are going through a very rough transitional period.
While some fans are panicking and abandoning a "sinking" ship, the more stalwart out there are looking to the future to see how this problem can be rectified.
What David Moyes needs to avoid doing right now is building a team around a group of players who have proven they are not good enough to play an instrumental part in the United framework.
With young talents like Adnan Januzaj, Danny Welbeck and Rafael all showing promise this season, the Red Devils do have a slightly more solid "youth" contingent than most fans give them credit for.
That being said, serious overhaul does need to happen in the United dressing room. The sooner the better for the team's chances of carrying on among the Premier League elite.
This article lists five players whose time with United should come to an end soon.
Ashley Young has moments of brilliance that tend to make some forget the other 90 percent of the time, where he's rolling around on the floor looking for a soft penalty.
Okay, I'm exaggerating a tad, but the former Aston Villa winger has done little to show that he is United quality barring his first few games for the club way back in 2011.
Since then, Young has been in and out of the first team without ever cementing a place for himself.
Often finding himself in the main picture purely by default as a result of injuries and a naturally weak left-hand side, Young has done little to really merit wearing the red of Manchester.
Some might argue the case that he is a strong impact-substitute, with a quick turn of pace being his greatest strength.
Others (most) on the other hand would bury their faces when they see that the side is relying on Young coming off the bench to try and bail them out. Usually this is to no avail.
He's had a few good games and scored some cracking goals, but Ashley Young is not the future of Manchester United.
Anderson has a contract that will keep him at the club (in theory) until June of 2015 (manutd.com).
For the sake of both parties it would be a lot kinder if the Brazilian midfielder could find a move away from Old Trafford before that time.
Anderson's continued presence at the club baffles me more than most things in football—and that's really saying something.
Manchester United signed Anderson in 2007. That is now seven years ago (I'm so good at maths).
During that entire time he has never made it as a regular member of the starting XI, and has probably had a smaller impact on the club than any player of his longevity in United history.
In truth, it wasn't really the Brazilian's fault.
When Sir Alex signed the then 18-year-old, he was a successful offensive central midfield player.
Trying to convert him into the next Roy Keane has set his career back...well...seven years.
It's time for both he and the club to end this relationship.
In the summer I wrote an article saying Cleverley could have stepped up this year and filled the void that was left by the failure to sign Thiago Alcantara.
You all hated it!
I wasn't saying Tom was as good, simply that in time he could progress into a more rounded and reliable player. In his autobiography (which came out after my article—It's a coincidence, I'm not suggesting anything I swear), Sir Alex Ferguson made the exact same comparison between Thiago and Cleverley.
I am not ashamed to admit I and the great one were both wrong.
Cleverley has shown little to no advancement this season. If anything, he seems to have taken massive steps backwards.
I feel a little bad for the man who has had loan spells at Wigan and Watford. The B/R Manchester United section seems to always find a player to pick on, and right now it's Cleverley.
Admittedly, his performances have been lackluster, and he earns himself a spot on this list for a reason, but some fans should remember at the end of the day he, and all footballers, are human beings.
That said, unless he finds his feet in the second half of the season, there seems to be little point sticking it out with a team who have aspirations of finishing consistently in the top four.
Fabio da Silva
Last season Rafael da Silva was a regular member of the first XI that ran away with the Premier League title.
His twin brother Fabio was unable to hold down a spot in QPR's relegation-bound first team.
A telling observation.
It's a hard mental barrier to break through, as both men look identical to one another, but the past couple of seasons have really emphasised one twin's superiority over the other.
The side certainly didn't miss his presence last season during his loan spell, and the one impact he has had this year was to get sent off against Swansea in the FA Cup third round.
Fabio isn't a terrible player, but I can't help but feel he is being kept around solely to please his brother. To me, he just doesn't seem like a Champions League star.
Rio's inclusion on this list is not in keeping with the other four men's. Obviously, as a United and general football legend, Rio has well and truly earned himself a place among the Old Trafford immortals for his performances for the club over the years.
However, in Sir Alex's autobiography (guess what I got for Christmas) he comments how unlike Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs, Ferdinand is not a player who will have the ability to last at a "top side" like United into his late 30's.
His game was based around pace rather than positioning and in his "old age" Sir Alex believed he would be lacking.
This season has pretty much proven that theory correct.
Perhaps though, it is wrong to say that Rio has "no future" at the club. Certainly on a human level I would not be shocked to see him return after retirement as a coach or possibly even a director (although the latter is less likely).
As for his time as a regular member of the first-team squad, I fear those days are now behind us.
David Moyes runs the risk of relying too heavily on both Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic, when in reality he should be pushing stars like Phil Jones and Chris Smalling. Both bright talents.
In fairness to Moyes, he has been doing this for most of the season anyway.
Ferdinand is a hero, leader and legend, but his time as a player at United should probably be coming to an end in the coming months.