To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Not now

Gary Neville explains why Manchester United players can't handle the pressure after Brighton loss

Cain Smith

| Last updated 

Gary Neville explains why Manchester United players can't handle the pressure after Brighton loss

Gary Neville had his say on Manchester United's 2-1 loss against Brighton in the Premier League opener and says that the players can't "handle the pressure" of playing at Old Trafford.

Two first half goals from Pascal Gross gave United a reality check following a relatively positive pre-season. A scrappy equaliser in the second half wasn't enough to salvage anything from the game.

Neville wasn't too surprised with the outcome, however, claiming that the Seagulls are a solid footballing side whilst Erik ten Hag hasn't been given significant reinforcements.

"Brighton are a better functioning team at this moment in time, they play good football, they find pockets and Manchester United have got the same players that we've seen in the last 18 months to two years," he stated during his podcast.

Erik ten Hag (Alamy)
Erik ten Hag (Alamy)

"The reality of it is that we've seen the same type of performance, the only question today was if Brighton could take their chances and score — and they did.

"So for me the outcome of the game was exactly as I thought it would be an hour or so before (the game), as I thought it would be yesterday (Saturday)."

Ten Hag still doesn't have a deep midfielder signed. Frenkie de Jong scored for Barcelona in a friendly match on Sunday evening. His deferred wage issues are still holding up any kind of deal away from Spain.

Christian Eriksen and Lisandro Martinez look like they could be starters going forward. Tyrell Malacia will challenge Luke Shaw at left-back.

But it is not enough and Neville believes that more changes are needed since the current squad have proven that they don't have what it takes.


"For Erik ten Hag to be delivered that squad on the opening day of the season is unacceptable, let's be really clear. 

"The reason I say that is that the players that Erik ten Hag has been delivered at the start of the season as his squad have proven (it) last season and the season before — the season before the fans weren't in the stadium.

"When these players have 75,000 fans in the stadium, or they've played in front of crowds, they've not been able to handle the pressure or have the ability to demonstrate that they're good enough for Manchester United.

"It's not just Erik ten Hag, it's been with Ralf Rangnick and with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

"The thing about those lads, they're really good lads some of those in that dressing room. They actually want to play for Manchester United, they give their all every single day, but they're not up to it and it's been proven over a period of a couple of years.

Scott McTominay (Man Utd)
Scott McTominay (Man Utd)

Martinez started as the central defender alongside Harry Maguire in the loss. It was a promising showing, but the former United captain believes that the Argentine will improve as time goes on.

"Martinez played and, to be fair, he did some good things but there was also a couple of tough moments.

"The first goal when Welbeck makes that run in behind him, in a couple of weeks (that could improve).

"The Premier League is very different. I saw great players from Manchester United take a few weeks or a few months to get used to it.

"We've seen Manchester City players take a few months to a year to get used to it."

Featured Image Credit: Sky Sports

Topics: Manchester United, Erik Ten Hag, Gary Neville, Brighton And Hove Albion, Premier League, Football

Cain Smith
More like this

Chosen for YouChosen for You


Trent Alexander Arnold did not hide his feelings when Jurgen Klopp brought him off, he was livid

29 minutes ago

Most Read StoriesMost Read

Brighton score late winner to dump Liverpool out of the FA Cup

17 hours ago