According to Gary Neville, the Red Devils of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer haven’t got a “champion mentality.” Manchester United have an “odd bunch”
For the first time since the Six Alex Ferguson final season at Old Trafford on January 12, United achieved the highest position in Premier League table post new year.
After the 1-0 victory away at Burnley, Solskjaer’s side were touted as genuine title challengers, and they followed up the result by knocking Liverpool out of the FA Cup in stunning fashion.
At Fulham, the Manchester outfit then picked up a 2-1 victory to pull two points clear at the top of the table, but last week, a surprise home loss against Sheffield United saw them fall back to earth.
“I think it’s a disappointment over the three games – Liverpool, Sheffield United and Arsenal – the fact that there’s two points out of those three matches,” the former Red Devils defender said on his Sky Sports podcast.
“The Liverpool and Arsenal games they were there for the taking and I had this debate, I saw Roy (Keane) and Jamie (Redknapp)’s piece last night, why didn’t you show more belief?
“They haven’t got it yet. They haven’t got the mentality of a champion team. It’s difficult to have that from being eight weeks ago thinking the manager’s in trouble after the defeat to RB Leipzig and going out of the Champions League, to all of a sudden eight weeks later transferring that mindset to ‘we’re a champion team’.
“They’re not like Liverpool. They haven’t won the title with all those players. They’re not like Manchester City, they haven’t got titles in the bank. They haven’t got that experience to be able to draw upon.”
Neville continued: “I get the bit where you would say ‘okay, you’re there, go for it, take it, it’s a strange season’, but they just haven’t got it. We didn’t think that ten weeks ago, we didn’t think it ten days ago. When we’re seeing them in games not quite going for it it’s disappointing, and I share that disappointment but it’s not surprising.
“It’s not surprising to any of us because we didn’t think they could do it, so when they don’t do it, let’s not be shocked.
“It’s just disappointing that they’re not quite there yet, but I accept it that they’re not quite there. I wanted at the start of the season as a Manchester United fan for them to get close to Liverpool and City. If you could say to me in another two to three months they’d be sat between Liverpool and City I’d be absolutely delighted, because that is big progression.”