Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says his Manchester United side are ‘disappointed’ after falling to a humbling defeat away defeat to Newcastle at St James Park.
The United boss was without key men Paul Pogba and Anthony Martial for the game, but this did not justify another abject performance that has become all too familiar under the Norwegian this season.
Newcastle debutant Matty Longstaff scored the only goal of the game midway through the second-half with a powerful strike, and the home side were rarely troubled as United failed to put together anything of a meaningful response.
United’s best chance came through Harry Maguire, who somehow missed a header six yards out unmarked from a corner.
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There were obviously very few positives to take in the game where most players were again poor, but Axel Tuanzebe put in a classy performance in place of the injured Victor Lindelof.
The academy graduate has staked a claim to retain his place alongside Maguire in defence, even when Lindelof returns from his setback.
Speaking to Sky Sports post match, Solskjaer said:
“We’re disappointed. We did lack quite a few key players but that’s no excuse. The players worked hard and ran their socks off but at the moment we’re in a place we’re not used to. Some of the boys lack a little bit of composure and we don’t create enough chances to win a game of football.
“They stay together as a team but we don’t create.
“Luckily for us it’s now the international break. We get time to evaluate what’s gone on over these eight games. We will sit down, hopefully we’ll get a few players back. It’s my responsibility. I need to sort their heads out. Young boys lacking confidence – they need some help from experienced players and staff.
“They’re human and they want to do well. They need to see the results of their hard work and we’re not getting those results so that’s going to affect them.
“The first half was the sloppiest we’ve been. In the second half we dominated but we didn’t create.
“We’ve not changed a lot. We’ve played the same way and stuck to our principles. The players are working hard. We’ve had six out from the Chelsea game and that’s going to affect results. But we’ll work hard and get the quality back.”
United currently sit twelfth in the table going into the international break, after the worst start to a league season in 30 years.
It doesn’t get any easier for Solskjaer when United return either, with unbeaten leaders Liverpool coming to Old Trafford.
🔻Last 8️⃣ away PL games – fewest points
3️⃣ MAN UTD
(Includes ever-present PL teams only)#NEWMUN pic.twitter.com/F25rqVsfpw
— Sky Sports Statto (@SkySportsStatto) October 6, 2019