Manchester United collapsed to a horrible 4-0 loss at Everton on Sunday as Richarlison, Gyilfi Sigurdsson and Theo Walcott found the net for the Toffees. Contributing writer, Nathan Quao, observed the tie and put down his thoughts.
Horror show from start to finish
There have been a few dodgy performances under Ole Gunnar Solksjaer. The home games against Watford and West Ham come to mind and of course, the loss at Barcelona also ranks high on that list but every Man United fan can boldly say that the loss at Everton will top the charts.
Nothing seemed to work for the Red Devils right from the onset and it cascaded until the very end.
Everything that could go wrong went very wrong. Tackling was non-existent, there was no pressing, no marking, zero attitude and the general feeling of players not wanting to be out there.
One would think that the fight for top four football would inspire something in the players for the day. However, as it turned out, it was a day when no wage was earned or deserved. It was a complete shutdown of the shop and Everton raided and plundered easily.
It was that bad.
Top 4 gone?
If the pursuit of top four is not dead, it is on heavy medication now as things stand. The loss at Everton leaves United with a lot to do if Champions League football will be at Old Trafford next season.
There are games against Manchester City, Chelsea, Huddersfield and Cardiff City on the horizon and even winning those games are not guarantees of finishing in the top four, simply because of results involving rivals for the same objective.
From an objective point of view, the game against City is a very complicated one and the one against Chelsea will be tough especially seeing how the last few home games have gone for United.
From a position of hope and belief, United have placed themselves in this tight corner and it was surprising to see such poor levels of commitment and performances at Goodison Park.
Massive efforts are needed to make top four possible but United cannot control their fate on that score any more, even if they are to suddenly improve their performance levels.
Time to prove yourself, Ole
Mentioning players and their part in getting results is very important. At Goodison Park, the players were very poor and they cannot hide from that. However, the change that is needed will have to spearheaded by Solksjaer.
He has to take the decisions in terms of moving players on and bringing in the ones needed for the forward march the club has desperately needed for years.
Where United go next will hang on Solsjkaer. He and his coaching team must find quality players and they must insist on getting those players. He must call for support from the powers that be.
On the pitch, he is responsible for the mix that will bring the victories.
He must show that he loves his job and he loves the club. He must show that he is willing to succeed and he must be ready to do all it takes. This is a chance to steer the vehicle to success.
After all, he is at the wheel.