Manchester United is now again in crisis mode following two hugely disappointing defeats.
Fans have been jubilant of late, thinking the Red Devils had navigated a tight corner following last week’s convincing 5-0 victory over a strong RB Leipzig side, but that salivating result has been followed up with dire performances against Arsenal and Istanbul Basaksehir.
Wednesday night’s Champions League defeat in Turkey was possibly the worst display by the team during Solskjaer’s tenure.
Former Chelsea player Demba Ba opened the scoring for the home side in the 12th minute following some truly lamentable defending from the Red Devils’ backline.
“That goal is completely down to organisation. It’s like Under-10’s football,” United legend Paul Scholes commented.
“What the back four were doing I have no idea, it’s embarrassing.”
Edin Visca then made it two up in the hosts’ advantage before Anthony Martial pulled a goal back for United on the stroke of half-time. No further goals ensued in the second half as Istanbul Basaksehir, supposedly the weakest side in the group, sealed their first ever Champions League group stage win.
Later on Wednesday evening, former United defender and legend Rio Ferdinand spoke up for every Manchester United supporter with his scathing post-match rant in analysing the woeful defending for Ba’s goal.
The former United centre-back said:
“You wouldn’t see this on Hackney Marshes.
“Where are the defenders? The goalkeeper [Dean Henderson] must be thinking ‘I’ve not seen this at Sheffield United all last season, I’ve come to Man Utd – one of the biggest teams around – and there’s zero organisation’
“Where is the person organising and dominating that situation?
“I’m screaming at someone if I’m on the half-way line. Crazy.”
Ferdinand expressed hopefully that United’s players would be fuming with each other inside the dressing room after such a dismal team performance.
“I’m begging that someone’s in that changing room dragging people about or asking the question: ‘Are you for real? Do you know what’s going on here? Where’s your responsibility? Who’s accountable for this?
“Is someone standing up and saying ‘this was my fault’ or digging someone out? Surely that’s happening – I pray to God it is!”
As for Solskjaer, again under the spotlight with the pressure piling up once again, Ferdinand hopes the United boss dished out the United’s Ferguson-patented ‘hairdryer’ treatment – although he’s unconvinced this would have been the case.
“I hope Ole’s in there in front of people, over people, saying ‘listen, you are embarrassing yourself and me.’”
Asked if it’s in Solskjaer’s personality to do that, Ferdinand added:
“It wasn’t his personality as a player, no chance, that wasn’t what Ole was about. He was very quiet, he was somebody who took care of his own game, but he was cutting with comments at times when he needed to be.
“I just hope he’s very animated in that dressing room because those players need a rocket.
“The way they’re playing at the moment, the inconsistency, the way they’re allowing people to run off them…
“I don’t see any intensity at all. There’s no intensity in the way that they play. I don’t see them getting up against people, ruffling feathers on a consistent basis. We might see it for one game, then we don’t see it for two. You can’t do that at a top club.
“If you want to be a top club going for trophies and competing, you need to be doing that week-in, week-out and that’s going to be the demand put on everyone every week.”
United will be hoping to recover from this setback and bounce back to winning ways this weekend, but Everton will surely be fancying their chances of beating Solskjaer’s side at Goodison Park.