Football

'The Quality Is As Poor As You Will Ever See From A Manchester United Team'

'The Quality Is As Poor As You Will Ever See From A Manchester United Team'

It was Special One - Watford Three at Vicarage Road today, as Manchester United's less-than-stellar start to the season under José Mourinho continued.

Mourinho has now lost three games on the trot for the first time in a decade and 16 of his last 34 across his spells at Chelsea and United. Prior to this run of poor form, he had lost 16 of 111. While it's far too early to sound alarm bells for a Chelsea-style capitulation at Old Trafford, looking at the evidence on the pitch suggests that Mourinho hasn't come close to finding the right balance to his side.

His side were thoroughly undone by a more energetic and hungry Watford side today and turned in a performance that was a mirror image of the abject slump which cost him his job in West London last December. A most worrying sign for any Manchester United supporter it must be said, but on the conclusion of the match Mourinho aimed his wrath at the match officials and his own players for costing his side the match.

Ettiene Capoue's goal, according to the Portuguese, was the result of foul play by Watford and should have been disallowed by the referee.

I think no debate, I think no controversy. I think that is an obvious situation...but it's something that I cannot control and I cannot even be critical. I think in the first half for about 25, 30 minutes we didn't play well and that's something we can control, we can improve, we can work on it. The referee's and the linesman's mistake is not under my control. I can't do anything to improve it.

In the second half we were much better, we get the draw (equalised) and after that we were the team and (Watford goalkeeper Heurelho) Gomes makes a phenomenal save and luck is again something we cannot control. We cannot control the referee, we cannot control the lucky moments.

The only thing we can control is our individual mistakes and our collective mistakes.

Paul Scholes, meanwhile, was less philosophical about his former team's performance. In his role as a pundit for BT Sports, Scholes has emerged as one of the best straight-talkers in the business and doesn't pull his punches whatsoever when discussing Manchester United.

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Obviously disgruntled at United's loss, Scholes said that United are about as bad as any United team he has seen in the past.

The quality on the ball is as poor as you will ever see from a Manchester United team. But that's the way it is at the moment. I think individually they were not good enough. In possession they were sloppy and giving the ball away all the time.

I thought Fellaini was alright today; he does a job in there. But I think that if you are Manchester United, you need more than that. You need someone who can stop the play as well, someone who can stop the opposition but who is capable of controlling a game of football as well, playing forward and passing forward.

One of the reasons cited by Chelsea supporters last season as to Mourinho's obvious decline towards the end of his tenure at Stamford Bridge was that he hadn't been backed sufficiently by his board in the transfer market but, with the world's most expensive player now among his ranks, that excuse won't go very far this time.

See More: Five Verdicts On The Main Players As United Slide To Another Defeat

John Balfe

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