It was a catastrophic night for Manchester United in the south of Spain as they were booted from Europa League quarterfinals in inglorious fashion, losing 3-0 to Sevilla and 5-2 on aggregate.
The tie had started so brightly for Erik Ten Hag's side, but Manchester United crumbled after Lisandro Martinez broke a metatarsal in the home leg. United conceded two own goals to level the tie, and then it was more calamity tonight. Harry Maguire delivered a disasterclass to set up Sevilla's opener. David De Gea - who was equally to blame for the first goal - made a farcical foray out of his box to gift Sevilla their third goal.
Harry Maguire in the wars again 😬pic.twitter.com/DOSnXWBtrs
— Balls.ie (@ballsdotie) April 20, 2023
It finished 5-2 on aggregate but it could have been worse.
Afterwards Erik Ten Hag called the result 'unacceptable'.
Manchester United - 'out-fought, out-played'
It's another night of unrest for Manchester United fans.
The heady days of mid-February, when Manchester United won beat Barcelona over two legs and beat Newcastle in the League Cup final, feel long gone.
The Ten Hag era has started optimistically, but there have been a number of hidings that make one wonder about the scale of the job he has taken on.
The lack of depth in the squad was brutally exposed tonight. Shorn of Martinez, Varane and Fernandez tonight plus Rashford and Shaw in the first half, United were no match for a game Sevilla side in front of raucous home support.
On BT Sport on Thursday night, Paul Scholes rinsed his former club and their players for failing to handle the atmosphere at the Mestalla.
"If you look over the two games, they gave away two own goals and two calamitous goals in this game , it has been an absolute disaster, disaster of a quarter-final."
"They were out-fought, out-played, lacked the ability to take the ball and were so sloppy on the ball and lacked aggression in their own play.
"You turn to experienced players on night like this to get some leadership from them. (Lisandro) Martinez was a big miss, (Raphael) Varane was a big miss and looking out there tonight, it will have made up Ten Hag’s mind on a few of these players.
"This will help him in the summer. He knows by looking at that first 20 minutes, he needs better players to fill his squad.”
"If you're a Man Utd player, you've got to be able to handle atmospheres like this! They lost to a team who are 13th in La Liga!"
"If they've got injuries, the squad probably isn't strong enough."
Paul Scholes tries to make sense of a nightmare evening in Seville 🔎#UEL pic.twitter.com/ZF9ehCEqRf
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) April 20, 2023
'Quadruple' was trending on social media in the aftermath of the match. It was only 65 days ago that Scholes and other partisan Manchester United supporters talked up Manchester United winning four trophies this season. The Premier League now is gone. The Europa League has ended in tatters for Ten Hag, as it has before. Manchester United face a very tricky FA Cup semifinal on Sunday against a dangerous Brighton side.
A season that promised much is coming unglued. The reasons are obvious. But Ten Hag will have no choice but turn to Maguire and De Dea on Sunday. There is big rebuilding work to do but there are more pressing tasks in the short term.