With Manchester United’s season dribbling to a disappointing end, Gary Neville has pinpointed what he feels is the biggest issue for the Old Trafford outfit.
Heading into the 2017/2018 Premier League season, many pundits predicted a neck and neck title race between Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City and Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United.
However, as the season ticked on from one game week to the next, it quickly became clear that there was only one horse in the race.
United had also been tipped for a lengthy Champions League campaign but instead, they limped out in the last 16 after two embarrassing performances against Sevilla.
With the media now focusing on Mourinho’s bizarrely harsh treatment of Luke Shaw, Gary Neville has suggested that Manchester United’s biggest issue is being overlooked and that such stories are simply proving to be a distraction.
‘To be honest with you, I can’t help feeling the whole Luke Shaw issue is a distraction from the critical aspect of the season,’ Neville said on Sky Sports.
‘United spent a lot of money and the aspiration was to win the Premier League and go as far as they could in the Champions League and obviously neither have happened.
‘The issue for me isn’t the individuals – whether Shaw, Paul Pogba or Alexis Sanchez are underperforming – but that the team aren’t very consistent, which over the course of Mourinho’s career his teams have always been.
‘If you look at the performances against Liverpool and then Sevilla, they were night and day, and this looks like a group of individuals rather than a group functioning as a team.’
Neville also addressed the huge disappointment that has been Paul Pogba with the Sky pundit suggesting that the French international simply needs to get his mind right in order to kick on.
‘Paul Pogba has got the character and personality to play for United, there’s no doubt about that,’ Neville said writing on Skysports.com. ‘He’s played in the biggest matches in Europe at a huge club in Juventus.’
‘What he has got to do is perform consistently. Some will say it is down to the position he plays, while some will say it is his lack of concentration and focus.
‘It is never a matter of a black and white in the sense that there’s always a player’s reason and always a manager’s reason, but as I look at it he needs to play with higher levels of concentration.’