David Moyes is preparing for a major clear out at Manchester United, which could see him axing up to eight members of the first team squad, according to the Daily Mail.

And in and among those players facing the axe, are Rio Ferdinand, Nemanja Vidic and Patrice Evra, all of which have managed over 1,000 games and 30 major trophies between them.

Moyes is also contemplating getting rid of Javier Hernandez, Nani, Anderson, Alex Buttner and Anders Lindegaard.

There remains continued anxiety over the fact Wayne Rooney has so far refused to sign a new contract at the club.

United currently find themselves on their worst run of form since 1992, and Moyes’ bad week has got even worse following the news the FA are set to investigate the comments he made about referees in the aftermath of their latest defeat at the Stadium of Light.

“After the first 15 minutes I thought we were very good. We defended a terrible free-kick, but how the referee has given a free-kick for that is way beyond me,” Moyes said.

“I just cannot see how that is a free-kick. And the penalty? We had a player booked for that the other day against Tottenham. The referee is in a great position to look at it, down the line, 15 yards, and the linesman gives it from behind and he cannot see through Patrice Evra.

“This hasn’t happened at Man United for a long time. I thought the support were great for sticking with their club, sticking with their manager and that is exactly what you need when you are not doing so well.

“We need a couple of fair decisions. We had a couple of penalty kicks against Tottenham and we have one given against us tonight for that. My goodness, give me strength.”

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