ENGLAND – Former Manchester United goalkeeper, Edwin van der Sar, has attributed the club’s struggles to the disappearance of strong characters in the dressing room.
Van der Sar spent the final six seasons of his career with the Red Devils, winning four Premier League titles and playing in three Champions League finals with Sir Alex Ferguson’s side.
However, United have fallen since Ferguson’s departure in 2013 and are in the midst of their worst-ever start to a Premier League campaign.
When asked to comment on the difficult times Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team is facing, Van der Sar told ESPN: “Of course it’s difficult. I left there eight years ago and it was a tremendous last six years of my career, winning four Premier League titles and playing in three Champions League finals.
“So it’s a long way from the position where they are in now.
“And of course they have changed managers a couple times now and the real progress is not seen yet, only the thing that they bought in the summer. They bought younger, inexperienced players with a certain desire and hunger, and not like the big names they bought the last six, seven years.
“I think for ourselves, when I came in the dressing room we had Ryan Giggs, you had [Paul] Scholes, you had [Rio] Ferdinand, [Gary] Neville and even Roy Keane at that time. So I think there’s always been strong characters. And I think for the last couple of years the strong characters have disappeared and [are] not making a difference anymore,” van der Sar said.