After such outstanding form last season at the Theatre of Dreams, remaining unbeaten in the league after the opening-day reverse to Brighton & Hove Albion and in all competitions since the Europa League defeat to Real Sociedad, the Reds have now lost to the Seagulls and Palace in successive home fixtures.
Joachim Andersen scored the only goal as the Eagles left M16 with all three points, with our focus quickly turning to European endeavours in the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday evening against Galatasaray.
The Turkish giants are the next test for Ten Hag’s team, as we look to bounce back following a narrow defeat in Munich against Thomas Tuchel’s Bayern side earlier this month, in our opening Group A encounter.
Quizzed on the home form in his post-match press conference, the boss dismissed any concerns and was keen to look forward all the more. “We lost two games [here] in a row in the Premier League now, that is clear, but I wouldn’t set that as a conclusion [right] now,” replied Erik, when asked if United are becoming soft to play against at Old Trafford. “We have to do better that is definitely the case, but we have to show it, even in our body language.”
In what has been a difficult start to the new season, the Reds know three points in our next European outing could prove key to getting back on track, in that competition. With the chance to impress under the lights and lay a key marker, Ten Hag also acknowledged how winning on home soil – as we saw so frequently last season – is a major boost for any team, and can still provide a platform to achieve our aims this term.
“Old Trafford needs to be a fortress and [we need to show] that you can’t get anything here,” the boss added. “The only way other teams do that is if we lose. We have to do better here. The demand is that we get a row of wins to get into a rhythm. We have to do better than we are doing right now.”