Gary Neville called it “a disgrace”. Roy Keane said they “threw in the towel”. And the stats show just how much Manchester United’s running and performance levels dropped off during their derby defeat at Manchester City.
Riyad Mahrez struck twice in the final stages to take the scoreline to 4-1 and underline Manchester City’s supremacy over their neighbours but it was the manner in which the visitors dominated in the second half at the Etihad which annoyed the former Manchester United captains Neville and Keane.
“Manchester United’s response to going 3-1 down has been embarrassing. They have given up,” Sky Sports pundit Neville said. “They are walking around the pitch. It’s nowhere near good enough. As a Manchester United fan, it’s embarrassing.”
“They threw the towel in which is shameful,” Keane added. “You need character and personality when you’re up against it and, after the third goal, it was game over.”
The data reflects that feeling.
United didn’t have a single shot in the second half and, from the 65th minute onwards, City created six chances to none. Pep Guardiola’s side out-passed their opponents 292-57 in that period, with 83.6 per cent possession.
In terms of the running stats, City comfortably outperformed their rivals, running 116.03km to United’s 112.71km and outsprinting them 162-125.
In the second half, as City ramped up their intensity from 76 sprints to 86, United dropped from 66 to 59.
“It is a difficult game that shows we have a long way to go to close that gap,” United interim boss Ralf Rangnick said afterwards. But while the gap in quality is one thing, the difference in athletic output is another.
“The effort and intensity from United in the last 20 minutes was non-existent,” said Neville. “The scoreline isn’t the problem. It’s the response to going 3-1 down that’s the problem.
“At the end of the game, Manchester United finished like an absolute shower. They were a disgrace in the last 25 minutes.”
City the dominant force in Manchester – Opta stats
- Man City have won 512 points in the Premier League (W162 D26 L30) since Pep Guardiola took charge, the most of any side, and 109 more than their arch-rivals Man Utd (403 – W114 D61 L43).
- Man City have completed the league double over Manchester United for the fifth time, and first since 2018-19. City have now managed this feat more than any other club during the Premier League era (also doing so in 2007-08, 2011-12, 2013-14).
- Man Utd have suffered just their second Premier League defeat in 14 games under Ralf Rangnick (W7 D5), with this their first defeat on the road in the top-flight since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s final game in charge of the club at Watford in November.
- During his managerial career, Pep Guardiola has only overseen more victories against Arsenal (17) and Burnley (13) than his 11 versus Manchester United, eight of which have come whilst at Man City (2x Barcelona, 1x Bayern Munich).
Man City host Sporting Lisbon in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie on Wednesday at 8pm, while Man Utd host Tottenham on Saturday Night Football at 5.30pm – live on Sky Sports Premier League.