Manchester United can expect a mass exodus of top players over the summer, in a season of discontent for the once-mighty Premier League champions. So says Brazilian midfielder Anderson, who was loaned out to Italian club Fiorentina in January — and says he’s never going back Old Trafford.
“I am sure that lots of players want out,” said the 25-year-old. “Especially people like myself and Nani, who have been in Manchester for seven or eight years.”
Anderson came to Manchester United seven years ago from Porto in a £26 million (US$42.4 million) transfer from Portuguese side Porto.
As of today, Manchester United sit in the unfamiliar and uncomfortable seventh spot in the Barclays Premier League table, on just 40 points. That total puts them 15 points off table-topping Arsenal, meaning that with 14 matches remaining the 2013/14 season, a repeat championship is all but out of the question.
For Manchester United, even securing a spot in the Europa League would feel like humiliation, but the current reality is that they are five points behind fifth-place Everton who if the season ended today would take that Europa League spot. So Manchester United may not even achieve that consolation prize.
Of course, for first-year Manchester United Manager David Moyes, nothing less than a Champions League berth would redeem what now seems like a disastrous debut season at Old Trafford. Liverpool hold the fourth and last Champions League position with 47 points at present.
Anderson, now freed from Moyes, says the former Everton boss never gave him a chance at Manchester United. The veteran midfielder made just three starts under Moyes. He has already played in three games for his new Florence club and says, “it’s better for me at Fiorentina,” where he hopes to catch on with a permanent contract following this season.
“The manager wants me and has shown his trust. I can show him my football. Even though the contract is only on loan, I want to stay for a long time,” Anderson said.
Fiorentina are now fourth in Italy’s Serie A, four points off the league’s third and last Champions League qualifying position, making participation in the prestigious European championship tournament next season a realistic possibility.
Manchester United have already lost eight games this season, three more than they dropped all of last season under retiring Manager Sir Alex Ferguson.