David Moyes has directed a veiled swipe in the direction of Manchester United chief executive Ed Woodward. Photo by: Darren Staples/Reuters

David Moyes has directed a veiled swipe in the direction of Manchester United chief executive Ed Woodward for failing to land the big signings he needed last summer.

His successor at United, Louis van Gaal, reeling from a 2-1 home defeat by Swansea on the opening day of the Premier League season, is also struggling to bring in the new faces he needs to bolster United.

And Moyes highlighted that issue as one of the difficulties he struggled to overcome during his nine-month reign at Old Trafford. He said: ‘We tried to bring players in during the summer transfer window but they didn’t materialise. It certainly wasn’t for the lack of trying. It wasn’t indecision. The complete opposite.

‘It’s been well documented that we wanted Fabregas, Bale and Ronaldo. We were close to getting a couple of major names. I’m not getting in a blame game here but things just didn’t materialise.

‘I had taken over from the most successful manager (Sir Alex Ferguson) in history. The chief executive (Woodward) had taken over from one of the most renowned administrators in the game (David Gill). It was a new job for two people.’

In an exclusive interview in the Mail on Sunday, Moyes admitted that taking over from Ferguson was virtually an ‘impossible job’, adding: ‘It was a step into the unknown and, looking back now, it was near enough the impossible job. But it was the right job for me. I’d been at Everton for more than 11 years. We’d qualified for the Champions League, got to an FA Cup final, I’d been voted manager of the season three times. I was among the most experienced managers in the Premier League. United had always had British managers.

‘I was devastated to lose the job because it was something I felt I could make a real success of. We knew it was going to take time to make the necessary changes. It was going to take time to evolve. But we were in the process of making other important changes. In the end, I don’t feel I was given time to succeed or fail.’

Moyes admitted that, in hindsight, he might have done certain things differently. ‘If there was one thing I would have changed I would have started the day after I finished the season with Everton,’ he said. ‘Instead of waiting until July 1, I’d have started immediately.’ An Everton contract that ran until June 30 meant he couldn’t.

‘I also went into the job thinking I want to do exactly what I did at Everton,’ he added. ‘But looking back I think there might have to have been a slightly different approach. I might have altered the style in which I managed.’ – Daily Mail