Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag says the club is “in a bad place” but he still believes he is the right man to stop the downward spiral at Old Trafford.
Newcastle’s 3-0 English Football League Cup win was their biggest away success over Manchester United in 93 years. It condemned the Red Devils to their eighth defeat in 15 matches, their worst start to a season since 1962-63.
Coming off the back of Sunday’s Manchester derby defeat by City, it was the first time United have lost successive home games by three goals or more since October 1962. They have lost five of their first 10 home games for the first time since 1930-31.
The series of unhappy statistics were accompanied by boos at half-time and the final whistle, just as on Sunday, and bring increased speculation about whether Ten Hag is the right man for the job.
“I understand when the results are not there it is logical they are questioning that,” he said.
“But I am confident I can do it. At this moment we are in a bad place and I take responsibility for it.
“But I am a fighter. I see it as a challenge.”
First-half goals from Miguel Almiron and Lewis Hall put Newcastle in command then, after a brief rally at the start of the second-half, Joe Willock sealed the win with a well-taken third on the hour.
The home side only managed two shots on target and wasted their best chance in the first-half when Anthony Martial appeared to duck out of a header, despite being in a central position just six yards out.
“It is below the standards everyone expects from Manchester United,” said Ten Hag. “It is not good enough by far and we have to put it right.
“I take responsibility for it. It is my team and they are not performing.”
Ten Hag confirmed Brazilian midfielder Casemiro will miss the Saturday lunchtime Premier League encounter with Fulham after suffering an injury during the first-half of his return after a three-game absence.
“We have a lot of setbacks this season so far, but that is never an excuse, you have to get results in,” he said. “Obviously, Sunday and tonight were far from that.”
United have lost five of their first 10 games at home for the first time since 1930-31, having lost just once at home in the Premier League last season – winning 15 of 18. (BBC)