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Gary Neville criticises ‘sleepwalking’ Man United and ‘sloppy’ Bruno Fernandes


Gary Neville has criticised a “boring” performance from Manchester United after they were held to a 0-0 draw by Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.

United only to get managed one shot on target against Palace, despite having 63 per cent of the possession on a foggy night in south London.

Neville was speaking on Sky Sports after the game and admitted that he was now worried that United could find themselves outside of the top four by the end of the Premier League season.

“We know the fans aren’t in the stadium, we know there’s been a lot of football, but they did look really lethargic tonight and well off it. The body language just looked really drained,” the former United player said.

“I thought that progress had been made in the last few weeks and that they would cement that second place by picking up three points at places like Crystal Palace and against Sheffield United and West Brom, but they are now making it really hard for themselves.

“If you were Liverpool or Chelsea watching that tonight you’d be thinking, ‘we’re in with a right chance because they look leggy’. Manchester United have got to find something from somewhere.


The Sky Sports pundit accused United of being complacent, noting that they’ve gotten away with poor first-half performances on a number of occasions in recent times.

“They are sleepwalking in games. They are thinking that they are okay, they will get a goal, because many times this season they have played badly in first halves of matches and then gone and won the second half. But now it’s not happening for them.

“You’ve got to have performances. You will get results sometimes when you play badly, but eventually it will catch you out. You need performances,” Neville commented.


‘Fernandes has not been at his best’

United’s star player Bruno Fernandes also came under criticism, with Neville questioning whether the Portuguese midfielder has become fatigued over the last number of weeks.

“He was sloppy from the first few minutes and he’s not been at his best this last couple of weeks,” Neville said.

“There may be a suggestion that he’s run himself into the ground and that could be true but you’ve got to have things happening in front of you as well and I thought Rashford on the left, Greenwood on the right, Cavani in the middle, they all stayed in their spots.

“When you watch the real fantastic front threes, and even this front three at times over the last few months, they are running diagonally across each other, there’s movement.

“There was no movement tonight. They were playing in straight lines which means for Bruno Fernandes, those two in midfield, [James] McCarthy and [Luka] Milivojevic, never got moved all night.”

United take on local rivals Manchester City on Sunday at the Etihad Stadium, where another lethargic performance could result in a one-sided affair in favour of the Premier League leaders.

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