£50m – United reveal cost of Moyes debacle
The full cost of David Moyes' disastrous 11-month reign as Manchester United manager has been revealed to be a staggering £50.4m in lost prize money and wages paid to the 51-year-old.
In figures revealed within the club's quarterly accounts yesterday, the failure to qualify for next season's Champions League will see United miss out on approximately £35m in broadcasting revenues, performance-related payments and Old Trafford gate receipts.
With United also dropping down the Premier League earnings scale from first to seventh during the 2013/14 season, the £8.4m slide in Premier League income, combined with the £7m received by Moyes in salary and compensation following his dismissal, ensures that the decision to hire the former Everton manager proved as damaging to the club on a financial level as it was on the pitch.
And in a frank admission to the club's investors during a conference call following the publication of quarterly figures, United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward conceded that the Moyes reign had failed to live up to the club's expectations.
"The 2013/14 season concluded last weekend and we finished a very disappointing seventh," Woodward said. "We are now focused on bringing in a new manager who will help Manchester United return to the top of English football and challenge in Europe.
"We expect to make an announcement in due course. In the meantime we continue to be active in the transfer market."
While Woodward insisted that a managerial appointment will be announced in "due course", Louis van Gaal is already in position to take charge of the club.
Van Gaal has agreed to succeed Moyes, who was sacked last month, on a three-year contract which will commence following the end of his commitments with Holland at the World Cup.
A delay in resolving the coaching futures of Nicky Butt, Paul Scholes and Phil Neville has held up the confirmation of Van Gaal's appointment, however, with Ryan Giggs understood to be considering an offer to become assistant manager to the 62-year-old.
Giggs is mulling over the offer, with the Welshman keen for Butt, Scholes and Neville, all of whom were expecting to learn their fate yesterday, to be given a clear indication of their future before committing himself to the Van Gaal regime.
Sources close to Giggs and his coaches have spoken of the group becoming disappointed and frustrated by the lack of communication and clarity from Woodward in relation to their positions at the club.
But with Van Gaal due to be announced as manager early next week, Woodward has made it clear to the former Ajax, Barcelona and Bayern Munich coach that he will be expected to return the club to the Champions League at the first attempt in order to make up for the financial impact of missing out under Moyes.
"Clearly we are (expecting to be back in Europe next season)," Woodward said. "The club's expectations, and you will see this reflected in the transfer market and what we've recently done from a managerial perspective, our aim absolutely is to get back into the Champions League.
"The drop (in prize money revenue) is off a high base this year. Because we won the league in 2012-13, that triggers a much higher percentage of broadcast money that comes to us from our participation in the Champions League this year. It's a relatively high number this year. It's a one-off. But because of the high broadcast revenues in 2014, we expect the isolated impact from not qualifying for European football will be in the mid-30 millions of pounds.
This includes a 15pc reduction in the price of executive facilities (for games at Old Trafford) next season."
United are attempting to secure at least two new players before the World Cup begins next month, with a £27m bid lodged for Southampton's England full-back Luke Shaw.
There is also confidence within Old Trafford that a deal can be struck with Bayern Munich for Germany midfielder Toni Kroos before he departs for Brazil .
With United not competing in Europe next season, however, there is the prospect of Van Gaal operating with a smaller squad than the pool of players left behind by Moyes.
As a result, there could be a greater number of departures from Old Trafford than previously anticipated, although the future of Brazilian midfielder Anderson, who has endured an unsuccessful loan spell with Fiorentina, is once again uncertain.
Despite the likely reduction in the size of the United squad, Woodward admitted to investors that the incoming signings would see the clubs wage bill rise.