Gary Neville held nothing back when he laid into Manchester United’s defence and goalkeeper David de Gea.
The Red Devils put themselves on the blackfoot immediately against West Brom as they conceded after 83 seconds.
It saw criticism get put at the feet of Victor Lindelof for getting “bullied” by forward Mbaye Diagne in build-up to the goal.
The eventual 1-1 draw means that United have only recorded 14 clean sheets from 37 games in all competitions.
And it was all too much for Neville, with the eight-time Premier League winner laying into the pairing of Harry Maguire with Lindelof as well as goalkeeper De Gea, which you can read in full here:
“I don’t think the discussions we’re having are anything new. We said at the start of the season Manchester United needed a centre-back and there were question marks over the goalkeeper.
“If you look at the goal yesterday, they get taken into the box, Diagne’s fighting with Lindelof for that first one, it gets played back out, they keep it alive. They [Maguire and Lindelof] don’t shift up, they move their feet for three, four yards – they never do.
“If they don’t start doing it they’re never going to get to a point whereby they’re winning the league. I think teams nowadays, in particular, you’ve got to be aggressive in getting out of your box. He gets pinned Lindelof, out muscled, bullied.
“It’s never a foul, honestly. That is never a foul at all. He’s too deep, he’s out-muscled. It’s a brilliant, brilliant goal.
“He reminds of this, Lindelof, when I played centre-back at United it used to 10, 15 games a season.
“There was always a game where physically I just couldn’t handle it. And I’ve got two goals that stick in my mind [Les Ferdinand and Alan Shearer].
“I felt a little bit for Lindelof in terms of that. When those games come along, where the physical strikers come up against him, he does struggle in the air.
“Maguire struggles the other way – if a ball gets played in behind him and he gets someone running at him one on one.
“You asked the question about pairings, and I include the goalkeeper in this triangle.
“[Peter] Schmeichel, [Steve] Bruce and [Gary] Pallister – 125 games, 2.2 points per game, goals conceded per game – 0.73.
“[Edwin] Van Der Sar, [Rio] Ferdinand, [Nemanja] Vidic, 96 games, 2.2 points per game, 0.72 conceded per game.
“You could say they played in great teams, yes but you look at Ferdinand and Vidic they had a midfield in front of them of [Paul] Scholes, [Michael] Carrick, [Ryan] Giggs and [Cristiano] Ronaldo – not a defender against them.
“De Gea, Lindelof, Maguire, 51 games, 1.8 points per game, 1 conceded per game.
“They’ve got Fred and [Scott] McTominay in front of them. They’ve got two defensive midfield players sat in front of them and they don’t move. Sometimes [Paul] Pogba plays in front of them.
“But the key is only one of the of the last 20 Premier League champions has conceded one or more goals per game and that tells you that De Gea, Lindelof, Maguire…
“If you think of [Ruben] Dias at City, Alisson and [Virgil] Van Dijk at Liverpool, [Vincent] Kompany at City, Vidic and Ferdinand at City, all the teams that have won the league that triangle of goalkeeper and two centre-backs are solid as a rock.
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“This three are not dominant. The keeper is not dominant at the moment, the two centre-backs are not dominant and if you concede one or more goals a game you’re not going to win the Premier League.
“Manchester United have to look at that.
“United aren’t going to turf Maguire out. He cost £80million, played every minute. He’s the one they’re going to build their defence around. What you’ve got to do is find the partner for him.
“That’s got to be someone of the physicality and the profile of Bailly. Someone who’s quick, strong and can cover Maguire one on one and who’s going to get them up the pitch higher.
“You’ve got to think about the goalkeeping situation and I think the goalkeeper situation will need attending to.”
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