Man United call off annual awards ceremony at players request

Man United and their players have cancelled the club’s annual awards evening following a highly disappointing season.

Red Devils fans will not need reminding about how bad 2021/22 has been. They started the season with elimination from the Carabao Cup at the hands of West Ham. Following dressing room issues and an embarrassing 4-1 defeat to Watford, United then sacked manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in November.

They brought in Ralf Rangnick on an interim basis to steady the ship until the end of the season. However, results have not improved much.

In February, Manchester United exited the FA Cup at the fourth round, losing to Championship side Middlesbrough on penalties. Weeks later, the Red Devils were knocked out of the Champions League. They lost 2-1 on aggregate to Atletico Madrid.

As a result, United will go their fifth season without silverware. This is their worst run since a trophy-less streak from 1977 to 1983. Heading into the season’s final day, the Red Devils sit sixth in the league.

Facing Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park, United need to match West Ham’s result to secure their place in next season’s Europa League. If West Ham overtake them, the Manchester side will fall into the Europa Conference League spot. This will be Man United’s worst-ever Premier League points total regardless of a win or loss.

Therefore, it is unsurprising that players and supporters do not want to have an evening to celebrate the season.

Man United call off awards event

According to reports from the Daily Mirror, Man United have cancelled their annual awards ceremony. This is at the players’ request, as they allegedly felt awkward about holding the event after such a campaign.

Usually an evening where fans celebrate the youth teams too, the cancellation presents the third straight year that the awards will not happen. The COVID pandemic affected the 2020 and 2021 editions.

The decision may be for the best. Tensions between the club and the fanbase are very high after recent events. Supporters have protested on several occasions at the owners of United. At the last home game of the season, there was a widespread fan protest over the club’s ownership by the Glazer family.

On Thursday, certain fans took online action, targeting United sponsors adidas too.

Read: Why a Man United supporters group wants fans to boycott Adidas

But who would have taken home the Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year award if the event went ahead? Given United’s season, it is hard to imagine anyone other than Cristiano Ronaldo winning the accolade.

Upon his return to Old Trafford, the Portuguese star has led the side in goals and got them out of difficult spots on numerous occasions. His 18 league goals put him third overall on the scoring charts for this season.

Ronaldo is truly the only bright spot in a dark season. With Erik ten Hag’s arrival signalling a new era in Manchester, fans will hope that next year will be a bit more successful.

Featured Image Credit: Getty