Ryan Giggs thinks David Moyes' Manchester United reign was undermined by mistakes in the transfer market. The Scot replaced Sir Alex Ferguson at Old Trafford in the summer of 2013, but his time at the club proved to be an unhappy one, with Moyes losing his job after less than a season in charge.
Giggs, who served as a coach under Moyes, has admitted that only signing Marouane Fellaini from Everton during his first transfer window was a major error. The United legend thinks Moyes needed to sign "two or three" stellar players in order to replace senior figures in the squad, such as Rio Ferdinand, Nemanja Vidic and Patrice Evra, as well as the retiring Paul Scholes.
"The recruitment in that first summer under David Moyes didn't go to plan," Giggs said of the ex-United boss, according to the Daily Telegraph. "I don't blame David. He came in without any of the inside knowledge about how the squad worked: when certain players needed resting, who was right for which game, who needed to be moved on and who needed to be encouraged.
"Those of us who had lived through it could help him a bit, but a manager has to acquire that knowledge over time."
Giggs admitted that the signing of Marouane Fellaini on transfer deadline day smacked of panic. He said, too, that Moyes spent much of his United tenure scrambling around trying to work out his best team.
"Signing Marouane Fellaini so close to the deadline that August, the club's only major deal in a summer when we needed two or three big names, suggested that things were not running smoothly," Giggs said of United's much-maligned transfer window. "United had signed players late in the window before – Dimitar Berbatov in 2008 springs to mind – but this time was different. This time it was more of a panic.
"Sir Alex might not necessarily have had a first-choice XI but he knew exactly what side was needed for each game, and would have that planned weeks ahead. David did not have that information.
"He started with a blank sheet of paper and for most of the first season we were chasing our best XI, or the right team for the game in question. The best run of form was the six straight wins in December 2013 when we had a reasonably settled side, and then injuries kicked in and things went wrong."