Brentford 4-0 Manchester United: Capital punishment leaves Red Devils humiliated

·4-min read

Manchester United suffered one of their worst defeats in Premier League history as Erik ten Hag's side barely laid a glove on Brentford in a 4-0 defeat on Saturday.

Ten Hag was looking for a response to last weekend's 2-1 home loss to Brighton and Hove Albion and was able to hand Cristiano Ronaldo a start, but all United got was a humiliation.

David de Gea was at fault twice as Josh Dasilva and Mathias Jensen put Brentford two up inside 18 minutes, before Ben Mee and Bryan Mbeumo ensured Brentford became only the third side to put four past United in the first half of a Premier League game.

While the Bees could not inflict further misery on Ten Hag and United, it mattered little as the damage was already done.

United gave Thomas Frank's men a helping hand for the opener as De Gea inexplicably let Dasilva's 25-yard effort squeeze into the bottom-right corner after Ronaldo had been robbed.

The floodgates then opened.

Shortly after United escaped a similar situation, Christian Eriksen was dispossessed inside his own box following an ill-advised pass from De Gea, and Jensen applied a disguised finish with 18 minutes played.

The off-balance Mee nodded in at the back post as United failed to cope with the hosts' physicality, and by the 35th minute it was 4-0 – Dasilva racing onto a clearance to play an exquisite pass into the box where Mbeumo held off Luke Shaw to score.

Ten Hag made three changes at the break and that at least helped stem the flow of goal concessions.

United improved as an attacking threat, with Ronaldo presented with a couple of half-chances and Eriksen testing David Raya with a header.

But still Brentford eased to a famous victory.

What does it mean? Urgency of United's squad rejuvenation laid bare

The Brighton loss was bad. This was simply embarrassing. The issues with United's squad were obvious last season, with Ralf Rangnick suggesting they needed 10 new signings to be competitive.

While Rangnick was ultimately cut loose from his deal to become a consultant, it is difficult not to look back on those comments now given how bad United have been in their first two games of the season, and the fact only three new players have come in.

Granted, there remains a bit of time in the transfer window, but if United cannot make significant improvements over the next eight days, Liverpool could enjoy another Old Trafford mauling.

Thomas Frankly exceptional

While Brighton won the midfield battle against United last weekend, they did not do what Brentford did. Frank set his team up to press with such intensity and it worked a treat.

Dasilva's goal was fortunate but was the result of pressing Ronaldo, and then Jensen's strike was a product of pressuring United as they attempted to play out from the back. The visitors proved they are way off being able to play Ten Hag's brand of football.

David de Howler

It feels a little unfair to focus on one particular United player because so many of them were poor, but De Gea's error for the opener was truly horrific and he needlessly put Eriksen in danger for the second with a pass that was not on. Those goals gave them a mountain to climb.

Key Opta Facts

- Brentford secured their first victory against Manchester United in any competition since a 2-0 FA Cup win back in February 1938, having gone winless in seven against the Red Devils prior to this outing.

- Manchester United are set to finish a day bottom of the Premier League table for the first time since August 1992.

- Brentford secured their biggest top-flight victory since beating Grimsby Town 6-1 back in April 1938.

- This is the first time since the inaugural Premier League campaign of 1992-93 that Manchester United have begun a season with back-to-back defeats.

What's next?

Ten Hag's hunt for a first win as United boss continues a week on Monday with the visit of bitter rivals Liverpool to Old Trafford. Brentford go to Fulham two days earlier.