Report by Dave Coleman 

Thats probably the most depressing performance lve seen from United in a long long time. Before l talk about it though l think l have to take issue with the many absolute nobheads in the crowd tonight who lm sure believe they were “supporting” Manchester United. Im talking about the ridiculous booing of Phil Jones every time he got the ball. How on earth does anybody think that is any sort of benefit to the team on what was always going to be a difficult night anyway. Whatever you say about Jones you can never fault his effort and the heart and passion he plays with that alone should give him some leeway but apparently not with todays fans. Im pleased that Phil ironically managed to rise above the catcalls from them and probably be the best performer on a poor night for the team. I dont doubt the players willingness to go out and win the game lm just very doubtful there was enough character in tonights team to be able to function in the increasingly toxic atmosphere around the club. In the first 40 minutes or so of the first we were comfortably the best team without being very good. But when first Martial and then Mata made a hash of more than presentable chances l thought that we were going to struggle to score at all. Burnley won a free kick on the halfway line in classic Burnley fashion when a big strong centre forward went down very easily. I knew this would cause us a problem because set pieces are their main attacking weapon and we have struggled with them all season. The ball was thrown into our area nodded on and poked into the net and just like that we were one down. We brought Greenwood on at the start of the second half and moved Mata inside. I like both as players but as l thought they would in this situation they struggled physically. 10 minutes into the second half from a throw in near the edge of our area a surprise shot crashed into the net off the bar and we were 0-2 down. From then on we had just about all the ball and were rarely out of the Burnley half but we never really looked like scoring. We did get the ball in the Burnley net late on from a Shaw header but it was disallowed when another big strong Burnley player collapsed from a challenge. The situation was made for Burnley, being able to defend deep with a comfortable lead is what they are best at. Sadly our team were lacking in the quality needed to break them down. Not many of the team had even an average performance. I believe De Gea needs a break he looks rocky at times and his distribution is appalling . Wan Bissaka is still defending well but needs to improve his passing and attacking play. Williams as ever put in the effort but its probably too much to ask an 18 year old to be first choice in our team at the moment. I like Maguire but the amount of goals we concede from set pieces suggests to me he isnt doing as well as he should at the main part of his job. Fred had his least effective fame for some time whilst Matic was probably just behind Jones as the best of a bad bunch. The front players look tired and badly out of touch particularly Martial who has missed important chances in both our last 2 matches. So we have another loss and very little to be optimistic about. I have no doubt that when the players we have missing come back we will be a much better team again but that is a long way off and will probably be too late to make a difference. Obviously new players are required but getting the right ones particularly in the January window is notoriously difficult but theres no arguing that the team needs some sort of boost or we risk having very little to play for before the end of Febuary. Next match is away to either Watford or Tranmere in the FA Cup on Sunday. Come on United! 🇾🇪

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