Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is a frustrated man, and rightly so, after Manchester United fell to a 1-0 home defeat to Arsenal on Sunday.
He must be thinking, “How does this team — largely the same group of players — beat RB Leipzig 5-0 in the UEFA Champions League midweek, and follow that up with such a toothless display in the Premier League?”
He must have thought something similar last week as well: “How does this team — largely the same group of players — pull off a dramatic victory away to PSG in the UEFA Champions League midweek, and follow that up with such a toothless display in a 0-0 draw with Chelsea?”
Inconsistency has been the name of the game for Manchester United thus far in 2020-21, and it doesn’t sound like Solskjaer can work out why that is, or how to fix it — quotes from the BBC:
“When you have played well you think you can take your foot off the pedal but that is not how it works because this was a big game against a good team and you have to be absolutely spot on with everything.
“We were too sloppy, too many passes went astray and the rotation was not there. Too many things that can go wrong in a game did for us today. Today we didn’t get the response we hopes for.”
“That’s football for you. It goes up and down. We didn’t turn up, especially in the first half. That’s what we have to address because we know these boys can be so good.
“We knew that this was the big game this week. And unfortunately in the first half we didn’t play well enough. Second half, we played better, we never seemed to have to defend too much. But when we did have to, we were too slow and gave away the penalty.”
Up next for Manchester United is a Champions League trip to Istanbul Basaksehir midweek and an away date with Everton next weekend. If the Red Devils are capable of consistency in any form, expect brilliance followed by disappointment.