Which managers could United have had, realistically? I know a lot of fans were asking for Klopp but he has repeatedly said he does not break contracts so he goes nowhere before 2016. Mourinho seems to be torn between Real and Chelsea so no real option either.
I think the hard truth is that even Manchester United can't freely pick people, they have to make do with who's available. Managers of other top flight clubs won't just drop everything just because a spot at another club opens up. Especially since SAF's retirement came so surprising.
I am near certain if we wanted Mourinho, we could have got him. Even the Chelsea fans tend to accept it is Man Utd he really wants to be at, his links with the Chelsea job are arising because he is kind of running out of options. He's alienated so many clubs over the years, you are kind of left with PSG or Chelsea, the main reason it's believed he doesn't want to go PSG is because outside of the Champions League it is zero challenge, it's too easy. It's been very noticeable over the years that Mourinho has never gone at Man Utd fans, he has never insulted the club, SAF. A few years ago it was widely reported that he was approached by Man City, but his people said he wasn't interested even entering in negotiations, strange for someone who seems to love having a big budget to spend. Recently we had a programmed called "Mourinho" here in the UK, on this all but admitted he would love the Man Utd job, he talked about looking for a club to settle down at, and there being a club in England that could offer this (wouldn't say that description fits Chelsea
), I believe he also dropped similar hints in US interviews. The final clincher for me were his whole actions around the Man Utd vs Real Madrid Champions League clash this year, he was giving so much over the top praise, acting so 'lovey-dovey' towards SAF and Man Utd, it was very over the top, and nearly everyone who saw it got the same impression, he was desperate for the Man Utd job.
Maybe I am very arrogant about the allure of the Man Utd job, imo the job after SAF left was going to be the most desirable job in club football (obviously I have a very biased and English perspective). I don't truly know who would have said yes, said no etc. I'm sure if we approached Guardiola before Bayern did, we could have got him. I know the club is claiming SAF only informed people a couple of days ago, but this imo has to be bs. I don't believe for a second we made the decision on our manager in 24 hours, there has to have been some degree of planning behind this.
It's not that I don't think Moyes is the right candidate, I don't even think he should have been anywhere near the list of candidates in the first place. For me the guy is just overrated, he has this stigma which is pushed by the media that he has done amazingly well on a small budget. Fact is in his reign he has spent the 7th highest amount of clubs in the Premier League, in the last 4 seasons he has come 8th, 7th, 7th, 6th. He has won zero trophies (others have won trophies on far smaller budgets than Moyes has). I see nothing special there, no big personality, nothing. In the UK imo we have this tendency of managers the media tend to adore and push for everything, and others who are not so liked and become scapegoats.
Finally to elaborate on a point I made before, this decision of manager is one of the biggest in the clubs history. It was never going to be easy for whoever followed SAF. With the way FFP is coming into football, and the unfortunate amount of leverage debt Man Utd have against the club, we can't afford even relative failure as a club. I think some people talk about how when SAF come in he had time to build. The big difference is, our club is in a much better state than it was in 1986, in 1986 the world wasn't our oyster, we didn't have the allure we have as a club now. I don't think trying to find the new SAF is or was ever going to be the right way about it, because I just don't see it happening.
ps. I love your avatar