Erik Ten Hag’s men arrived at Anfield as favorites against the hosts Liverpool. But they suffered their worst loss in living memory, more painfully, to their bitterest rivals in the premier league, Liverpool.
It was a demolition no one anticipated. To go down 7:0 to their biggest rivals in the premier league, was the most painful experience for most if not all Manchester United supporters on Sunday.
Erik Ten Hag’s recent victory over Newcastle in the Carabao Cup, and their victory over Barcelona in Europa in the same week, had inspired a new feeling that the club had turned the corner. Until disaster struck.
Experts have argued that the demolition came from the sense of fear among the Liverpool squad that they were facing a revived and stronger team in United, who would make worse their recent troubles.
Oliver Holt writing for The Daily Mail in UK said: “There was a fear in Liverpool that the renaissance that has been taking place at Old Trafford this season marked more than just another of Manchester United’s false dawns. There was a fear that, after a decade in the doldrums, the wind was filling United’s sails again. There was a fear that after so many vanity signings and bad coaching hires, United were finally getting it right. There was a fear United were about to overtake them again.”
Fear drove Liverpool as they went into this match. Fear, and the pent-up frustration of a season full of disappointments and defeats and doubts. And certainties replaced by uncertainties. Fear that the Jurgen Klopp era was over. Fear that all the glories of the last few years had come to an end and that others, including United, were lining up to grind them into the dirt.
And there was something else inside Liverpool last night. There was rage. There was rage against the dying of the light. Rage that they were being written off and disrespected. Rage that they were being called too old. Rage at the criticism directed at players who have won the Champions League and the Premier League in the last few years and who are not ready to shuffle away to the knacker’s yard quite yet