Grumbles grow but ‘Chosen One’ banner stays

The contentious ‘Chosen One’ banner will remain on display at Old Trafford despite a growing clamour for it to be removed in the wake of Manchester United’s increasingly woeful season under David Moyes.

Grumbles grow but ‘Chosen One’ banner stays

United stumbled to their sixth and perhaps most embarrassing home defeat of the season on Tuesday when they went down 3-0 to bitter rivals Manchester City.

The last time United lost so many home games in the league was in 1978. Anger followed the defeat, with one fan having to be escorted out of the south stand after approaching the dugout to vent his anger against the United manager.

There were reports of fans aiming abuse at Moyes’s predecessor Alex Ferguson, who was in the directors’ box. Ferguson handpicked Moyes from a strong field last summer. For that reason, a banner has hung in the Stretford End that includes Moyes’s face with the words ‘The Chosen One’ written alongside it.

Some fans have called for the group that made the banner — Stretford End Flags (SEF) — to remove it following the 3-0 defeat to Liverpool. And more fans called for its removal on Tuesday in the wake of a third successive home derby defeat.

Stewards also gathered around the banner at full-time to prevent it from being seized.

Manchester United Supporters Trust (MUST) thinks it is understandable that the club’s fans are disappointed by the fact their team now sit seventh in the league, some 18 points adrift of leaders Chelsea.

“If your ego has been continuously set on success for 20 years and then to suddenly you do not have it, it’s obviously going to affect you emotionally in a difficult way,” MUST spokesperson Sean Bones said.

MUST believes a lack of investment from the Glazer family since their controversial takeover in 2005 has also been a key factor in United’s failures this term.

“The Glazers have had an element of success, but we feel that success was based on the investment made by the PLC in players like [Wayne] Rooney, [Cristiano] Ronaldo and Rio Ferdinand — the very best possible players, and we invested in the Class of ’92 and brought them through and the Glazers got the benefit of that.

“And the problem is when you don’t invest correctly at the cortical points, you get yourself into the position where there is a huge chasm of class between the ones who have invested and the ones who haven’t, and it costs a lot more to repair the damage. Sometimes it can take a long time to repair it.”

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