Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville revealed that he is not surprised with the club’s exit from the UEFA Champions League. He criticized the team’s approach to the game at Old Trafford and believes that there was no plan. Renan Lodi scored a header in the first half to give Atletico Madrid the lead in the game as well as the tie. This season will be their fifth season without a trophy, their longest drought in 40 years.
“The only benefit of Manchester United going out last night, if there is one at all, is that they are now 100 percent focused on the league, and getting into the Champions League is their priority,” former Manchester United defender Gary Neville said. “Their best chance of getting into the Champions League and finishing in the top four is probably being out of the Champions League so they can focus everything on it. However, I’m not sure what that will have done for their confidence because it was a miserable night.”
“I was in the stadium. I walked down to the pitch at the end of the game and I got a closer view of the disappointment and the dejection than I ordinarily would do upon the gantry. They were absolutely brassed off. They were disappointed, dejected, upset,” he added. “They wilted in that second half. There was no plan. The game just fizzled out. There was no real big finish that you would expect when you’re 1-0 down. I was negative after the game against Spurs on Saturday Night Football when they won 3-2 because I thought that performance against Spurs would get them beat against Atletico Madrid and it did. Atletico was organized, compact, they fought. They have got quality upfront and in midfield and it didn’t surprise me one bit.”