United were 3-0 down inside 20 minutes for the first time in the Premier League era, and it stayed that way as an Alexis Sanchez double and Mesut Ozil’s goal took Arsenal into second on goal difference. Although the blue half of Merseyside hasn’t been a happy hunting ground for the Red Devils in the past, there is no doubt that if all the players step up and perform to the best of their abilities, victory will be inevitable.
“We won our last Premier League game 5-2 and we won here 3-0 so in the Premier League we have scored eight goals in two games against two hard opponents”.
“We have prepared ourselves in that way, to play more compact but not to lose our aggression”.
“The way we started was so without emotion and that kind of stuff – you can not expect that”.
A couple of changes at half-time were perhaps indicative of van Gaal’s frustrations, the Dutchman withdrawing Matteo Darmian, who was having a torrid time against Sanchez at right-back, and Memphis Depay, who struggled to get into the game in the wide left position.
United’s only real chance in the game came just before the break when Anthony Martial turned and shot but saw his effort cleared by the boot of Cech who was virtually a spectator for most of the match. I am very disappointed. “That first-half we were unbelievable, no-one could have dealt with us, it was the best football I have ever been involved in”.
You can, though, talk about what United can still achieve this season, even after those 20 miserable minutes against Arsenal. But the main thing that United has this season up till now is their consistency in all the departments say it defending the ball, attacking when needed or controlling the midfield.
He’s short of options in the defence, compounded by injuries to Luke Shaw and Marcos Rojo, and ended the game at the Emirates with three midfielders in his back four.
Mata wrote in his weekly blog, “As you could see, everything went wrong in the first half”. We tried to get back into the game, fighting until the end, but obviously we were penalised by our terrible start. I have never seen that of my team, that is the question I put to my players… When you give a team like Arsenal so much space to play football, then you know that you shall lose. “And they can play, they’re a fantastic team”.