If Ole Gunnar Solskjaer survives this then he can survive anything. This was as shambolic, humiliating, embarrassing and disgraceful as it gets for Manchester United. And it all happened at the hands of Liverpool. Enough should be enough but such is the faith in Solskjaer from the club’s hierarchy, such is their belief that he is ‘the one’ that he will probably somehow limp on before the inevitable happens and he is sacked. Or maybe he will quit.
It again leads to more questions about those making the decisions because if they think there is progress at United then they are deluded.
Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea, the three title contenders, are in a different league to them. United are eight points behind leaders Chelsea after just nine games – that is almost a point of game – and surely, already, the best they can hope for is fourth place. Maybe that is good enough for the Glazers but they should have looked at Solskjaer’s face as he walked off.
He looked shell-shocked. He looked lost. He looked out of his depth. He looked like a man drowning.
At Old Trafford, Egyptian king Mohamed Salah grabbed a hat-trick as Naby Keita and Diogo Jota completed Liverpool’s 5-0 victory over Manchester United.
Harry Maguire apologise
“Apologies to the fans. Nowhere near good enough for this club. We apologise. They stuck with us, coming off the pitch at 5-0 singing.
“In the first half it was too open. We gave them too many chances.
“I will be looking at myself, my performance. I am the captain and I lead the boys. You have to look at yourself in the mirror and ask what you can do better. And not what others can do better.
“It hurts to lose to Liverpool. The third goal was poor, we were in it at 2-0. We were just too open.
“I look at that group of lads, they are working hard in training, and we have to stick together.” We’re doing everything we can and we’re working as hard as possible, but at the moment it’s not good enough. I keep coming back to that phrase but it’s the only way I can put it.”
“Manchester United do not have the players who can press, and I don’t mean just Ronaldo.”
“I didn’t think it’d ever get as bad as it did today. It’s been close for 40, 50 years – not today. It’s a shocker, absolute shocker. And the timing could not be worse. As soon as they played a proper team they’ve been obliterated, pulled to pieces. I didn’t think they’d play like that today because I thought they’d flip a switch. But you can’t flip a switch in football. That Manchester United group of players, they get outrun – they’re one of the lowest running teams in the league – there’s nothing worse than being told you’re one of the lowest running teams in the league and the easiest to play against, but they’re both. It reflects poorly on the manager, the staff and the players.”
Sky’s pundits are pulling apart United’s so-called press. Fernandes is tearing around at the keeper, but then others are, or aren’t, and they are all basically doing their own thing and leaving huge gaps.
“Liverpool looked like a team that had another gear. Manchester United looked like they are trying to find a way of playing, which seems daft for a Premier League team. They have players who are capable of great things, but that does not make them great players.”
“I’m not trying to be clever, but I don’t think Liverpool were at their absolute best. Whenever they made passes, and got in and around the back four – it’s a joke of a back four the way they’re playing at the moment – they were just a mess, Keystone Cops type defending.
“Drink this in. You can hear the supporters, it’ll never get better than that. One slight disappointment – half an hour with ten men. United and Liverpool are the biggest rivals in world football, you’re not going to get that opportunity too often.”