(Reuters) – Manchester United came in for heavy criticism from former players after they crashed to a chastening 4-0 defeat by Brentford in the Premier League on Saturday, their second loss in as many league games under new boss Erik ten Hag.
The result left United bottom of the table as Dutchman Ten Hag became the first manager since John Chapman in 1921 to lose his opening two games in charge of the club.
BBC pundit Chris Sutton said United had “hit rock bottom” while his former strike partner Alan Shearer put down the debacle to years of mismanagement at Old Trafford.
“It is an absolute mess. Years of failure… there is a lack of leadership and the recruitment has been terrible,” Shearer said on BBC’s Match of the Day.
“It will take time and an unbelievable amount of money to get things right, and a lot of patience from the Manchester United fans. They are miles away from where there want to be.”
Brentford scored four goals within 35 minutes in the first half against a woeful United side, who have now lost seven straight games on the road stretching back to last season.
Former United defender Gary Neville, who has been critical of the owners, the Glazer family, said we were witnessing the “annihilation of the club”.
“I thought United would do better but they have been mauled, bullied, messed about with like you wouldn’t believe, and there’s nowhere to hide,” he said on Sky Sports.
“I have been watching United for 42 years and I can’t think of a moment when I have thought things have been as bad as that in the first half.”
The Sunday Times went with the headline “Rock bottom” while The Sun described it as “Ten Green Bottle Jobs”, referring to the colour of the new third kit that United were sporting.
United, who finished sixth last season to miss out on the Champions League, host Liverpool next Monday.
(Reporting by Dhruv Munjal in New Delhi; Editing by Christian Radnedge)