David Moyes has dismissed speculation that Manchester United have lost their fear factor in the wake of Sir Alex Ferguson’s departure.
The Reds conceded late in the day in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Southampton at Old Trafford, a disappointing result having been ahead for the best part of an hour and spurning several good chances.
The result means they have only collected four of nine points since the initial five-game “baptism of fire”, which saw them meet Manchester City, Liverpool and Chelsea – a run of form that is raising questions over their resolve.
“Sir Alex Ferguson has a great history and his experience will always work in charge of any team,” said Moyes.
“But the fear comes from the team on the pitch.”
United have not yet recorded consecutive league victories under Moyes and are currently enduring their worst start for 24 years.
However the Scot, whose compatriot Ferguson stepped down in May after 26 hugely successful years at the helm, is looking to project a confident front.
“The players here are good enough and come the end of the season is when you have to be in your best form,” he said.
“Over the years Manchester United have been slow starters quite often.”
Moyes’ tactics have been drawing criticism, labelled as “negative” by some parties, but the former Everton boss was quick to counter any suggestions that pragmatism had prevailed against Southampton.
“I didn’t think that at all,” he said, referring to the late substitution of forward Wayne Rooney for defender Chris Smalling.
“I thought we actually tried to get a second goal. Only in the last three or four minutes, when I was trying to make sure we had some height at set-pieces, did we actually lose a goal from a set-piece.”
United welcome Real Sociedad in the Champions League on Wednesday night, a fixture that Moyes will hope can kick-start a good run of form.
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