MANCHESTER, England — David Moyes is expecting a "mixed" reception from Everton fans on Wednesday when he faces the club he served for 11 years for the first time since becoming Manchester United manager.
Moyes took over at Everton in 2002 when it was staring at relegation from the Premier League, and turned the club into a regular finisher in the top eight of the standings.
However, his stock has lowered among some Everton supporters following his summer pursuit of Marouane Fellaini and Leighton Baines, making a joint bid of 28 million pounds (now $46 million) for the club's top two players that was described by Everton as "insulting." Fellaini eventually joined for 27.5 million pounds ($43 million) in the final minutes of transfer deadline day this summer.
"It could be mixed," Moyes said Tuesday, when asked how he'll be received by Everton's away following at Old Trafford on Wednesday. "They know their football and they know exactly where the club has gone and will understand I took a lot of good players there. But it's football and you never know.
"For me, I'm not an emotional person. I'd rather get on with the game."
Moyes says he doesn't even look at Everton's results anymore, such is his focus on succeeding at United in his first season at Old Trafford.
If he did, he'd see that Everton was doing well under his successor, Roberto Martinez, and currently three places ahead of United in fifth place.
"Obviously I have fond memories. You don't just throw 11 years away," Moyes said. "But I have had to divorce myself from it. United is my team now and all my concentration has been on them."
Moyes said Robin van Persie could return for United after sitting out three games with a combination of groin and toe problems.