Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was frank with his assessment that Manchester United’s defending was ‘poor’ for Sheffield United’s winning goal at Old Trafford and that his side were ‘well under par’.
The Red Devils suffered a shock 2-1 defeat to the Blades on Wednesday night as they missed out on the chance to reclaim Premier League top spot from rivals Man City.
They fell behind to Kean Bryan’s first half header, before captain Harry Maguire cancelled out the opener with a header of his own against his boyhood club.
But Oliver Burke then found himself in acres of space inside the United penalty area 15 minutes from time, and fired a powerful strike towards goal which deflected beyond David de Gea.
talkSPORT pundit Trevor Sinclair labelled it ‘Bird Box’ defending in reference to the hit 2018 film in which people can’t see as they are wearing blindfolds.
United boss Solskjaer was, like fans and pundits alike, also far from happy with the defending for the goal.
And he was very critical of United’s overall performance too.
When asked about the defending for the second goal, Solskjaer told talkSPORT: “Poor… we lost the ball cheaply and we got back in numbers but didn’t clear our lines.
“Then we didn’t get out to the ball and then we didn’t pick up men in the box.
“Everything was wrong about that goal and we got really punished. That’s the Premier League for you.
“We just didn’t perform well enough. We were well under par and we didn’t create enough, we didn’t have the quality against a very good and compact defence.
“In the Premier League this happens, and in the year we’re in this happens. We’ve seen it so many times; the surprising results.
“You’ve got to earn the right to win a game of football. We dominated possession, had more shots than them but they’ve got players as well that can hurt us.
“Set plays, pace… so we didn’t deserve the points.”
United have now lost four Premier League home games this season and have somewhat faltered at Old Trafford in an otherwise excellent season.
But Solskjaer hit back at the suggestion that United’s home form was an issue.
“We just beat Liverpool three days ago here at home,” added the boss. “Of course, I’m disappointed tonight.
“Home or away, what’s the difference? It’s sterile and there are no fans!
“Apart from that we are used to playing on this surface, but the pitches are good everywhere. Home or away it doesn’t matter.”