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Bullied and Humiliated | Three Very Crucial Decisions United Got Wrong in Their Defeat Against Brentford

Brentford vs Manchester United

We noticed some key points as Manchester United plummeted to a 4-0 defeat to Brentford, making it two consecutive defeats at the beginning of the 2022/23 Premier League season.

The Erik ten Hag era got off to a “nightmare” start as the Red Devils ended up losing at home to Brighton & Hove Albion in the first week and everyone was expecting a statement performance against the Bees last week. However, it was nowhere close to a standard United performance.

Manchester United, Brentford
Image Obtained Via Sports Brief

All the opposition goals came inside the first 35 minutes as Erik ten Hag’s dream job showed every indication of quickly descending into a downward spiral. United started on the backfoot as Josh Da Silva’s effort crept into the net, thanks to David de Gea. Afterwards, Mathias Jensen dispossessed ex-Brentford player Christian Eriksen to score the second.

Manchester United target Ivan Toney then set up the third for Ben Mee who outmuscled new signing Lisandro Martinez to head in from a set-piece. The ever-reliant Ivan Toney-Brian Mbuemo combo finished the game off before half-time Let us see the three key points we learnt from the Manchester United vs Brentford game:

1.  Ten Hag Needs To Get Rid Of The Underperforming Players From Last Season

The same players who were responsible for ending Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Ralf Rangnick’s tenure seem to be continuing the same trend under Ten Hag. The manager is better off giving opportunities to the youngsters like James Garner, Alejandro Garnacho and Zidane Iqbal if the senior players cannot step up to the standards expected by the fans.

Twice in the space of a couple of minutes, Brentford caught Manchester United out playing from the back. Having gotten away with it, just about, the first time, the Bees scored the second time. This highlighted the differences between the two teams.

United’s players still look like they are getting used to playing together in Erik ten Hag’s system, while Brentford were a well-drilled team, unified in their approach, who knew exactly what they were doing. It is going to take a while for Ten Hag to get his players all on the same page, and an overhaul is clearly required.

2.  De Gea Is Turning Out To Be A Problem

Last season with Dean Henderson back at United, De Gea needed to prove his credentials to keep his place in the lineup. With Henderson leaving on loan this season, De Gea has looked far from his best, making the error leading to the first goal.

David De Gea

De Gea’s limitations as a goalkeeper are well known. He won’t claim crosses and he can’t help the team effectively to play out from the back. The Spaniard ended the last season poorly as well and is becoming an expensive liability.

3. United Team Is Getting Outmuscled At Set Pieces

United were exposed all over the pitch in the first half, especially on set pieces, conceding goals far too easily. Much of this goes down to goalkeeper David de Gea who has absolutely no command of his box, piling up pressure on his own defence.

Lisandro Martinez and Harry Maguire have no command over the defensive structure. It would be better to get Raphael Varane back into this starting line-up. Lisandro Martinez must also prove that he can withstand the physicality of the Premier League. The team also lacked height, with a midfield of Fred, Christian Eriksen and Bruno Fernandes not at all imposing themselves along with the strikeforce.

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Erik ten Hag needs to make the necessary changes to the side, irrespective of whether new signings come or not by the end of the transfer window. Varane should have started at the back, while the tactical decision to start both Eriksen and Bruno Fernandes backfired. Either Donny van de Beek or James Garner should have started.

Neither Diogo Dalot nor Luke Shaw is convincing at full-back positions, and while options in attack are very limited, Jadon Sancho didn’t impress at all in the attack.

Ten Hag will definitely be looking for players who can work in his system but he will not be able to replace all eleven players in his lineup in one transfer window. So, he needs to integrate some of his principles into the current squad.

Manchester United fans have been planning to protest, with both a visible dissent against the Glazer ownership and a stay away from Manchester United matches at Old Trafford.

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