Just a quick post: A friend of mine (ManU fan, I think) commented on ManU’s last season: “It is a strange and unique situation; very rarely does such a huge club take such a vast and shocking plummet.”. That intrigued me, was it really so bad? So I looked at the last five seasons in the first two leagues of Spain, Germany, Italy, and England and calculated the highest point swings between two seasons. I only counted seasons where the club was in the same division, obviously. Without further ado, here are the results:
ManU managed to get 25 points less in season 13/14 than in season 12/13, and that is good for a shared 7th place in the last 5 years. Admittedly, the teams with the large swings in both directions are usually middle-of-the-road teams who manage to have a very bad season without getting relegated. The only really comparable case is Schalke, who followed a 2nd place with 65 points in 09/10 with a 14th place and 40 points. Of course, they do not have ManU’s successes and international standing, but they are also CL regulars and at least in the last years a top 4 Bundesliga club. (An aside: I just realized that the point swings should be adjusted for the total number of games, well, just keep in mind that the Premier League has 20 teams and the Bundesliga 18.)
So, ManU’s decline was not unique, but definitely unusual. Big clubs are usually a lot more stable than that, especially if they are not forced to lose players due to financial reasons (like BVB or Arsenal in earlier seasons). The table above has to hurt for ManU fans, that is not a sign of a well managed club. We’ll see what LvG makes of it.