It’s a very sorry situation and sadly representative of not just the footballing world but the zeitgeist in general. It seems that the impasse between the prodigious but impressionable youngster Ravel Morrison and his current club Manchester United has come down to money. Although the player has recently tweeted that Manchester United haven’t offered him a new contract, Sir Alex Ferguson himself has been quoted as saying that Morrison’s financial demands are too great and that his agent wants to find him a new club. There is even talk of him going to arch rivals Manchester City. A move to Manchester City would be difficult for United fans to take but Morrison’s departure to any club would be a hammer blow at Old Trafford.
It’s a sad state of affairs that there should be any obstacles to Morrison committing his medium term future to the club that has tutored him from childhood and tried to steer him clear of the off field problems that have blighted his progress so far.
When I look at Ravel Morrison I see a player of rare talent. Of course it’s hard to state categorically that he is going to become a footballing superstar. Even if he does stay clear of the courts in future, he may well not develop at the same rate that has seen him gain so much interest from the football world. But there does seem to be something very special about the lad. For someone so young he has a delightful touch combined with speed of thought and the composure of a 30 year old. He loves a flick and could definitely go on to become a flair player, the like of which England rarely produces. Some may find the comparison insulting to the King, but in terms of his movement and style, if not his achievement or value to United’s history, Morrison has something of the Cantonas about him. In his few first team outings so far you can see an understanding of the game and natural ability which, if harnessed correctly, could make Ravel Morrison a leading player in world football. But only if he does things the right way.
Many would say that there is no better place for him than Manchester United. Under the tutelage of Alex Ferguson Morrison could become a legend. His time is certainly about to come in the first team if he stays and gets his head down. Sadly, however, the speculation seems to suggest that he will decline a new contract and instead seek greater pay at a lesser club. Either he is being badly advised or Manchester United are indeed being a little miserly with one of their future stars. Whichever way you look at it, the parting of ways will probably be damaging for both sides. Morrison could well suffer without the stern yet fatherly protection offered by Sir Alex Ferguson and Manchester United are going to lose one of their most exciting projects in years, without seeing their investment pay dividends.
It seems that a mediator is needed to sort out this problem. An everyman who has the empathy of both sides. Rio Ferdinand has become an excellent spokesperson for the club whilst retaining the respect of all the players. He is the perfect middle man between management and playing staff. Perhaps he is the man to sit the boy down and have a really good chat with Morrison about his future. Because it seems that Ravel Morrison could be about to make a big mistake.