David Moyes confident he will not be sacked as Manchester United manager, revealing he still has 'big plans for years going forward'
Former Everton boss in defiant mood ahead of Champions League meeting with Olympiakos
David Moyes says he fully expects to remain manager of Manchester United for the long-term despite a performance and defeat against Liverpool that dramatically increased speculation over his future.
The 3-0 loss on home soil to their bitter rivals was the lowest point in a season littered with disappointments, from the third-round FA Cup exit to Swansea and Capital One Cup semi-final loss on penalties to Sunderland to the first-leg defeat to Olympiakos in the Champions League.
Moyes and Manchester United have an opportunity to rectify that loss to Olympiakos tomorrow night when they meet at Old Trafford for the second-leg.
However, defeat in that game and Moyes' future becomes yet more precarious. Although Moyes does not agree that his future hinges on tomorrow's result.
"My future has not changed one bit," he told the media today.
"I have a great job. I know exactly the direction I want to go in.
"The season has not been as good as I had hoped but I have ideas that I will put in place when the time is right."
Moyes admitted after the loss to Liverpool that the job of Manchester United manager had been more difficult than he anticipated. Yet despite problems in the short time he's been in charge, Moyes is looking to the long term.
"We have big plans for years going forward," he said.
"This is a club that works on a long-term vision, not a short-term one and that is why I was given a six-year contract."
While Moyes currently maintains the backing of the Manchester United hierarchy, it is thought the remaining games of the season could be pivotal in determining if they remain behind him. With the club prepared to spend big in the transfer market this summer, the club must be confident the former Everton manager is the man to take them forward.
Among those who will influence Moyes' future is his predecessor and the man who hand-picked him to take over, Sir Alex Ferguson. The former United manager has been a regular at games this season and Moyes said today he continues to speak with his compatriot often.
"I speak with him regularly and when he is at the games.
"He has been very supportive. He told me it would be a difficult job before I came in, but he and (vice chairman) Ed (Woodward) are very supportive."
Should Manchester United be able to progress past Olympiakos something could yet be salvaged from the season. Trailing 2-0 after the first-leg, United will be aware that only five teams have overturned a deficit of two goals or more in the Champions League era. However, Moyes thinks United can make it through.
He said: "We will try and do that. It is not something that has happened a lot but it is something we have to make happen."
Despite their sub-par performances this term, Moyes still has confidence in his players.
"The know they can play better, I don't think any of them are questioning that," he said.
"But I believe in the players. They agree they have not showed it as often as they would like, but I hope they can show it tomorrow night."
Moyes feels the squad owe their support a good performance after a season that has seen them lose five home matches.
"I think the support inside Old Trafford has been phenomenal," Moyes added.
"The first thing I mentioned to the players (after the Liverpool defeat) was that we need to give something back, me, the team, we need to make sure to give them a night to remember.
"We will leave nothing behind on the night hopefully and give everything to get through to the next round."
Defender Patrice Evra, who has won one Champions League and five Premier League titles since joining the club eight years ago, knows the team's performances have not been up to scratch, but he says they will give it their all against Olympiacos.
"It has been a difficult season for everyone," the left-back said.
"We are not used to losing games but everyone will fight for this club, everyone loves this club.
"In life you always have a second chance. I am not going to tell you we are going to qualify but I promise we are going to fight and the fans will be proud of us after the game."
United will be without Chris Smalling (hamstring) and Jonny Evans (calf) for the match.
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