During the Sir Alex Ferguson reign at Manchester United, the club’s supporters would often taunt opposition clubs about their lack of success and living in their past glories.
Ferguson, who was in charge of United for 26 years, led the club to 38 trophies in his time as boss with many hailing him as one of the greatest managers of all time.
But since his departure, United haven’t even looked close to moving to the heights which Ferguson took them to on so many occasions.
All they have to show since his departure is an FA Cup crown – albeit Louis van Gaal who led them to that trophy was sacked just a few days later – a lucky League Cup win and a Europa League trophy, all because the current manager Jose Mourinho gave up on his side reaching the Premier League’s top four.
Although things did work out as United made their way back into the Champions League.
Trophies aren’t easy to win, all fans in world football know that – but for a club which considers itself among the best in the world, that is simply not good enough.
Mourinho is wearing the brunt of the criticism right now and rightfully so. Some of his team selections in the early stages of the season have been interesting to say the least.
As it stands, Mourinho’s third season syndrome is well and truly alive. In his commentary during the weekend’s 3-1 loss to West Ham, Jon Champion compared the Portuguese manager’s selections with those of his downfall at Chelsea during his second stint with the club.
If we think back to that, he is exactly right. Right now, it feels Mourinho has lost his touch and his tactics are outdated.
This season we have already seen Mourinho deploy Ander Herrera (against Tottenham Hotspur) and Scott McTominay, in the weekend’s loss, in a three-man defence. Whether that’s Mourinho making a point to the board for not buying a centre back in the summer is only an answer he knows.
It’s not only on the pitch where things aren’t going right. Once again, Mourinho has already targeted players in his press conferences. In the past week, Phil Jones and Alexis Sanchez have been publicly shamed.
While he offers a different approach to his man management, a more in your face style, it simply isn’t working with this group of players and he needs to change his ways to get the best out of them.
Paul Pogba and Mourinho’s deteriorating relationship has been well and truly in the headlines across the globe. The footage which emerged from Sky Sports last week demonstrated that things were at an all time low.
We haven’t even gotten to his treatment of the likes of Eric Bailly, Anthony Martial and Luke Shaw – those players have all felt the wrath of a man under pressure in recent months.
Watching the match over the weekend, it felt as if he has now well and truly lost the dressing room. There was no urgency in United’s play going forward, bar a 10 minute spell when Marcus Rashford entered the fray.
Reports in previous days have suggested United officials have already identified Zinedine Zidane as Mourinho’s replacement but whether Ed Woodward wants to make a big call remains to be seen.
If things remain they are, he will simply have no choice to sack Mourinho as the cries for his departure grow louder.
Already, Mourinho’s side are nine points behind leaders Manchester City and Liverpool and based on what we’ve seen they are no chance of catching up.
Games against Valencia and Juventus loom in the Champions League, while Premier League fixtures against Chelsea and City are on the horizon.
Based on their form right now, they could turn into long days at the office for United players, staff and fans.
For so long, United fans got in the face of their opposition rivals for their lack of success but now they are falling into a position they though they would never find themselves in.
Supporters anticipated there would be a drop off after Ferguson departed but no one would imagine they would fall this steeply and so quickly.