Ten Hag was right to criticise Man Utd players, says Dalot

By Sports Desk October 07, 2022

Erik ten Hag was justified in criticising his Manchester United players on the back of last week's heavy Premier League loss to Manchester City, full-back Diogo Dalot has said.

United's four-match winning league run was ended in emphatic style by rivals City, who led 4-0 at half-time and 6-1 in the second half en route to an eventual 6-3 victory.

It marked the fourth time United had conceded six goals in a Premier League match and leaves them sixth in the table after seven matches of the 2022-23 campaign.

Ten Hag admitted after the match his side produced an "unacceptable" display, one in which they were "undisciplined", "lacked belief" and "made wrong decisions".

And Dalot, who played the full 90 minutes at the Etihad Stadium, accepts he and his team-mates can have no complaints regarding their manager's choice words.

"[Ten Hag's comments] did not hurt. I think this should be the standard of this club," he told reporters. "If you play for Man United you believe every single game. 

"You have to have confidence as well, but you have to take the responsibility that you're playing for the biggest club in the world. 

"This has to be normal for us but in a good way – not be overwhelmed but take it as a responsibility and this has to be the standard for every player."

Dalot retained his place at right-back for Thursday's Europa League group trip to Omonia Nicosia as United responded to the City defeat with a 3-2 comeback win.

It was not a vintage performance from United, with Karim Ansarifard giving the hosts a shock half-time lead, but Dalot says picking up all three points is all that matters.

"After a defeat like City it is always tough, but it is time to take responsibility and especially improve in some respects, which we should for the rest of the season," he said. 

"We had a lot of challenges [against Omonia] and we needed a response. The three points is what we came for and we are happy with that.

"Overall we could have controlled the game much more than we did, especially in the last minutes and also in the minutes after we conceded."

Marcus Rashford was introduced at the midway stage against Omonia and scored twice for United, either side of assisting fellow substitute Anthony Martial.

That made Rashford the first United substitute to both score and assist in a Europa League match, with this their 47th game in the competition.

"The substitutes made a really good impact, which is amazing for us as a team. I'm really happy with that," Dalot said. "They deserve it as well. 

"It shows every player wants to play, to show they have a role in this team. Overall, there are some really positive things to take but also some things that need to get better."

United return to league action on Sunday with a trip to Everton, against whom the Red Devils have won just one of their past seven league matches.

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