Manchester United are in alien territory admits David Moyes, but the club on 'the verge of turning' following Capital One Cup defeat to Sunderland

But manager rejects the idea that the presence of Sir Alex Ferguson in the stand was unhelpful

The Stadium of Light

Manchester United manager David Moyes has admitted that his club are in alien territory and that he is facing his biggest challenge of his career after another dismal performance from his side saw them deservedly beaten by Sunderland in the first leg of their Capital One Cup semi-final.

Moyes looked as desolate and lost for solutions as he has been, during the 2-1 win for Gus Poyet's side, which condemned to a third successive defeat for the first time since 2001. Moyes again laid most of the blame for United's anaemic performance on officialdom - expressing disbelieve about Sunderland's winning penalty and the free kick from which they led.

Of the penalty he said: “The ref is in a good position to look it but the linesman gives it from behind, he can't see through Patrice Evra. It has not happened at Manchester United for a long time,” he said of the sequence of defeats.

“I've been here before. I've done it before. I have the experience. I just sense that it's on the verge of turning. Of course [it's tough] but if you're going to be in this job you need to win. It's part of football management. It's never going to be the easy ride. It was the biggest challenge getting this job,” he added

Moyes also rejected the idea that the presence of Sir Alex Ferguson in the stand was unhelpful. “He is a great sounding board for me and so is Sir Bobby [Charlton].”

United now find themselves desperate for an injection of players who are not burdened by the task which looks so much beyond them. Moyes said claims Jorge Mendes was in Manchester to conclude a deal taking Real Madrid's Fabio Coentrao to United was “not true.”

It became clear that captain Nemanja Vidic could leave for nothing this summer when his agent ruled out a contract extension at the end of the season. Vidic has only six months remaining on his current deal, and although United plan to enter discussions over extending his stay at Old Trafford, his agent Silvano Martina told Italian radio that the player is keeping his options open.

“Vidic, given his contract situation, has several teams looking at him,” Martina said. “Vidic is a very good player and will have no trouble finding a new club. For the time being we are remaining calm. However, at the moment, I would rule out an extension with Manchester United.”

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss