Goals on Sunday: Moyes must make Man Utd more consistent and avoid more mishaps

'The best managers know how to get the best producing their best'

Last Updated: 27/03/14 5:28pm

Manchester United have yet to become a cohesive unit under David Moyes despite their upturn in form, says former striker Teddy Sheringham.

United booked their place in the Champions League quarter-finals in midweek with a 3-2 aggregate win over Olympiakos thanks to a rousing 3-0 home win and followed it up on Saturday with a 2-0 victory over West Ham, Wayne Rooney opening the scoring with a spectacular 58-yard strike.

But Sheringham, who made 104 appearances for United between 1997 and 2001, says Moyes must get more out his team if they are to improve on their current position of seventh in the Premier League table.

Disjointed

"I think there's something missing," the 47-year-old told Goals on Sunday. "Maybe it's Sir Alex because he knew his players and how to motivate his players. David Moyes has come in and he's got to learn about his players; it takes time to learn about different egos, the different ways people tick.

"It's a two-way thing as well. The players have got to realise that what David Moyes wants as well and if he's not getting that point across as quickly as expected then it becomes difficult.

"United have become disjointed. They look like they are not quite sure how they are playing. 'Are we getting it up to the front early or are we playing it at the back?' These things have to be made clear. Even though you are top players, you still have to know what each other are going to do at certain times.

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"Sometimes it has clicked for Manchester United and sometimes it hasn't. That's the name of the game at the top level; you've got to be consistent week in, week out. You can't have the mishaps along the way.

"I very rarely saw Ferguson coaching players but he knew how to get inside people's heads; he knew how to make people tick and get the best out of them. The best managers know how to get the best players producing their best moments.

"Moyes obviously knows Wayne Rooney from before and he's playing very well this season. He doesn't quite know Robin van Persie and perhaps he needs a little bit more time to understand where he comes from and vice versa so he ticks on a regular basis as well. He's got to do that with every player."

Dream

United's reward for overcoming Olympiakos is a quarter-final tie against Champions League favourites Bayern Munich - the team Sheringham famously helped to beat in 1999 as United sealed the treble.

"Fourteen years after it's what I get asked about most of all - it must have been a great night. People tell me they were in South Africa watching it in a bar...

"It was a moment to dream about. We didn't have the best of starts and went 1-0 down after seven or eight minutes and Bayern could have gone 2-0 up at any stage - they hit the bar, Peter Schmeichel made some great saves, they hit the post - but they didn't.

"Two minutes into injury time Ryan Giggs had a right-foot shot - he's never going to score - so I was aware to the situation [to score] and two minutes later, a minute even, I got across my man at the front post and helped it on to the far post and Ole stuck out his boot and put it into the roof of the net.

"They were amazing moments. We didn't expect it to happen but it was an amazing season. We won the treble that year and that crowned an amazing 11 days."

So what does he think of United's chances this time around?

"Bayern Munich for me are the favourites to win the tournament so it would be a big ask for Man Utd to get past them at this stage, especially without Robin van Persie. You've got to have your top players playing at the top of their game and if he's not playing I think it's asking a little bit too much.

Prizes

With United's Premier League title defence long since over, Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester City continue to vie with each other for the crown - the Blues effectively ending Arsenal's hopes with a crunching 6-0 victory over the Gunners.

Sheringham admitted that - having made over 200 appearances for Spurs in two spells at the club - the result was something to cherish despite his admiration for Arsene Wenger as a manager.

"It hurts me to say it but I love the way that Arsenal play football," he admitted but added: "Yesterday was a great result for me rather than all the Arsenal supporters that I know.

"You have to take your hat off to Arsene Wenger for the way they play football. He keeps producing these players and the football they play every year is a credit to him and the Premier League.

"Without a doubt they need to win something. It's all well and good getting in the top four every year and saying 'we're still getting money and we're a big club in financial situations' but the fans want to see prizes.

"They want to see trophies on board, they want to go to FA Cup finals, they want to be celebrating with their team. They don't just want to see that they've got a load of money in the bank."