Do Manchester United And Manchester City Treat Their Unwanted Players Unfairly?

Posted: August 20, 2016 in European Football, Football, Manchester City, Manchester United, Opinion, Premier League
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Another question which may be asked in lieu of the title is; does anybody care? After all these are very highly paid individuals, they will be sold to another club at some stage and they will remain very highly paid individuals.

Maybe it is more a question of pride and respect or the lack of it when it comes to a manager’s treatment of his players, in which case the money is not an issue.

Last season it was Victor Valdes at Manchester United who was ostracised for his behaviour. In his case Louis van Gaal had decided that Valdes had acted against his and the club’s interest by not wanting to turn out for the reserves. This was never fully cleared up as Valdes always said that he had never refused to play for them. Whatever the truth of the matter the result was that Valdes spent almost two seasons on the naughty step and was banned from being anywhere near the first team before running down his contract and moving to Middlesbrough.

One way of looking at this is that van Gaal thought Valdes had shown no respect to Manchester United and he was only exacting revenge. It appeared to be very harsh, whatever the crime committed.

This season has seen Jose Mourinho arrive at Old Trafford and Pep Guardiola at The Etihad. Both have been bad news for a couple of very high profile players.

At Manchester United Bastian Schweinsteiger appears to have played his last game for the club and is now training with the reserves having been banished from the first team. According to Jose Mourinho this is only because he is surplus to requirements and, as he is not a member of the first team squad, he cannot train with them. It is an argument that makes sense as Mourinho wants to concentrate on the players who will be representing United this season.

Over at City things may or may not be just as bad for Joe Hart. If press reports are to be believed, and they’re usually not, Pep Guardiola is looking for a new goalkeeper. This could be Claudio Bravo but, at present, Hart is playing second fiddle to Willy Caballero, so it is hardly likely that things are going to improve when a new keeper comes in. Apparently, Pep wants a goalkeeper who can play football whereby “foot” is the operative word and Hart is only good at stopping the opposition scoring.

There are a couple of differences in the situations between Schweinsteiger and Hart. Schweinsteiger hasn’t been at the club very long and hasn’t any roots in England so it would hardly be a wrench for him to leave. He always wanted to play for United at some stage and he has achieved this ambition. The other factor for him is that he probably won’t continue to play for much longer as he has suffered many injuries over his career and has already retired from international football.

It’s different for Hart as he has been at City for ten years, is established in Manchester and is the first choice goalkeeper for England. Also, at 29 years of age he could carry on playing for at least another ten years. Due to the fact that clubs do not generally have many goalkeepers on their books, Hart has not been banished to the reserves but the feeling is that he would have been had another quality goalkeeper been available.

With Hart, however, there is still the feeling that he could remain at City and fight his way back into the team by improving his ball control and cutting out the occasional mistake. There is no such door open for Schweinsteiger. He will leave as soon as he finds another club.

So is the treatment meted out to these two players fair and reasonable or is it harsh and unjust?

I will let the loyal followers of these chronicles be the judge of that, suffice to say that, in actual fact, I just think they happen to be two players who don’t fit in with their new managers way of thinking or playing and, whatever happens to them, some people will think it is entirely fair whilst others will shout foul!

Some of the people all of the time, all of the people some of the time, is a phrase that comes to mind when trying to gauge opinion on these types of subjects.

  1. RedMe says:

    Club comes first, there is no room for sentimentality in football or in business.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bernard says:

      Club comes first, no doubt. However, there is no excuse for treating players as mere commodities. They are still human beings and deserve to be treated as such. As for poor attitude and poor behaviour they should be dealt with on their respective merits. Exacting revenge on a player who may have stepped out of line is undignified and poor man management.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. James Taylor says:

    Club first always. That being said, I love your writing. It’s a good mix of informative and passionate. Over the summer break I checked everyday to see if you had returned to writing, and I am glad you are back at it. One of my worst fears this year was that LVG would extend, Man City would buy Messi, or that you would stop writing. This is the first time I have commented, but you should know that your blog is a saved tab on my ipad, and in spite of the fact that I own a business and work as an attorney, I still find time to read your work. Keep up the good writing!

    Liked by 1 person

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