Manchester United need to “reset” and “take stock” after sacking manager Jose Mourinho, says former captain Gary Neville.
Mourinho was sacked on Tuesday after two and a half years at the club, with United sixth in the Premier League, 19 points behind leaders Liverpool.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Neville said the club need to appoint someone who meets the club’s “key principles”.
“It’s about making sure the next manager is the right manager,” he said.
“The reality of that is they’re going to have to put the right football structure in around him.”
United decided a change was needed after no progress with results or style despite spending £400m on 11 players.
The club said the new manager will understand the philosophy of the club, including its attacking traditions.
It is understood players and staff were not happy after a disappointing and unsettling period.
Neville added: “This is not just a moment to sack Jose Mourinho and appoint another manager. This is a moment for the club to take stock of what they’re doing, to reset the structure in terms of recruitment, in terms of the decision-making in the football club, and make sure what they do next is the right move.”
The 43-year-old, who played for United from 1992-2011, believes Mourinho is not the only one to blame.
“The players take responsibility, the board take responsibility, the manager and the coaching staff,” he said.
“There have been seven years of poor decisions and poor recruitment. I’ve no idea who makes the decisions in the football club from a point of view of recruitment and structure – who has the final say? Who is it that is telling Jose Mourinho that those players shouldn’t be signed? I can’t see anybody in the football club that has the qualifications to do that.
“The recruitment over the last years has been erratic, the current management team have had three chances at appointing a manager, they’re probably going to get a fourth.”
What are others saying?
Former Manchester United defender Patrice Evra said on Twitter:“The thing that is annoying me the most right now is why are people so focused on Paul Pogba and Jose Mourinho?
“Let’s focus on rebuilding something solid instead of being in a playground. Doing this is only disrespecting the badge, from now we only need positivity.”
Former Manchester United striker Michael Owen said on Twitter:“Inevitable is the word I’d use. Mourinho had to go in the end. Simply not getting anywhere near enough out of his players.”
Former Manchester United coach Rene Meulensteen said on BBC Radio 5 live: “I think they’ve looked back critically to where they are and asked themselves: ‘Is this the right way forward?’ With the transfer window right ahead of them, I can understand the timing.
“You hear people talking about how United have lost their identity and that’s what you see among the players. There is no really clear direction and certainly not after they’d been under Sir Alex Ferguson for so many years.”