MANCHESTER, England (AP) — David Moyes’ troubled tenure as Manchester United manager could be coming to an end after less than a year .
According to widespread reports Monday on the websites of numerous British newspapers, Moyes is set to be fired by United and could be forced out before the end of the season on May 11.
The club hadn’t made an official comment on the speculation by late Monday, but leading British bookmakers all slashed their odds on Moyes’ removal.
“They’re going to have to clarify this position quickly,” said former United defender Gary Neville, who described the club’s handling of the situation as “repulsive.”
“The average manager gets sacked every 12 months, and I’ve always felt Manchester United should be different, hold themselves up as a club that basically stands against what’s happening in the game.”
Defending champion United is seventh in the English Premier League at 17-11-6, and Sunday’s 2-0 loss at Everton ensuring the club will miss out on a top-four finish and fail to qualify for Champions League for the first time in 19 years. United is 23 points behind league-leading Liverpool (25-5-5) and on course for its poorest league finish since 1990.
Moyes was selected by Alex Ferguson, who ended his 27-year reign as manager at the end of last season, and given a six-year deal last May.
British newspapers reported 40-year-old midfielder Ryan Giggs, who has been a player-coach this season, could be Moyes’ temporary replacement. Dutch coach Louis van Gaal and Borussia Dortmund coach Juergen Klopp have been mentioned as possible replacements for next season.
“We are rebuilding,” Moyes said Sunday. “We have got things we want to do. The supporters have been incredibly behind the team and supported the team throughout. They realize it has been a difficult season … They understand it has not been good, I recognize it has not been good, it needs to be better.”