Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard believes the blame for Manchester United’s slide this season should lie with the players, rather than manager David Moyes.
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Howard, 34, played under Moyes for seven campaigns at Goodison Park, and is a former United player.
While the Red Devils are only seventh in the Premier League, and have been knocked out of the FA Cup by Swansea and the Capital One Cup by Sunderland, the United States international feels it is unfair to hold his former boss solely responsible.
He told Sky Sports: “David Moyes has come in for a lot of criticism but the one thing I will say is that he's never kicked a ball for Manchester United.
“As players you have to stand up and be counted. It's a very easy thing to talk about the manager and unfortunately that's the pressure of it. But you know those players won the title last year.”
Meanwhile, Sunderland defender Wes Brown has said he does not feel sorry for his former club United after helping to end their chance to win silverware in the Capital One Cup on Wednesday.
Brown, 34, made more than 350 appearances for United, winning the Premier League five times and the Champions League twice, before leaving Old Trafford in 2011.
"I don't feel any sympathy for Manchester United at all,” he is quoted as saying by the Guardian. “I'm a Sunderland fan now. Obviously I'm a United fan as well but we're playing them so I'm Sunderland all the way."