If you’re a Manchester United supporter, you’re forgiven for feeling deja vu right now.
The Red Devils were dumped out of another European tournament, this one far earlier than expected, due to an inability to deal with crosses.
Even the post-match from the captain — credit to Harry Maguire for greeting the cameras on both occasions — sounds the same.
After Sevilla, Maguire lamented that “We’ve gotta do better” dealing with crosses after goals from Suso and Luuk de Jong led to a 2-1 loss despite plenty of danger without finish from United.
The De Jong goal in particular looks painfully familiar when viewed through the lens of Tuesday’s 3-2 loss at RB Leipzig, right down to Aaron Wan-Bissaka being unable to stop a crosser and Maguire watching it sail past him.
His comments Tuesday, from the BBC:
“I don’t want to look at excuses. … If you can’t defend crosses you’re going to lose games. I don’t want to look at shape, it’s not an excuse.
“It’s a tough group but we felt we should get through. That’s the standards of this club. I’m gutted for everyone, we worked so hard to reach this competition. No matter what group we got it would be tough. We have to do more.”
You do feel for United given their high hopes following a rally to qualify for the UCL on the final day of the bonkers, disjointed, and interrupted 2019-20 Premier League season.
United now drops into the Europa League, where they’ll join Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham Hotspur, Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal, and Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester City in the knockout rounds.
The Red Devils face Man City on Saturday, and Solskjaer’s men will have one more day’s rest but have traveled to Germany while City hosted Marseille. Look out if the Red Devils can’t get it done Saturday.