Dimitar Berbatov

Dimitar Berbatov: Ole under pressure after defeat? No chance

Betfair Ambassador Dimitar Berbatov and Man Utd manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
Judge Ole after the group stage, says Berba

"A defeat to Young Boys is a terrible start but that’s all it is – a start. There are five games to go in Group F and I expect United to qualify."

Betfair Ambassador Dimitar Berbatov says it's ridiculous to claim Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is under pressure after Manchester United's defeat to Young Boys in the Champions League...

Aaron Wan-Bissaka's red card was a big blow to Manchester United against Young Boys but the Red Devils should have dealt with the situation better. When you go down to 10 men, you need to be more focussed and more intelligent. United were neither and, in the end, a lapse in concentration from Jesse Lingard cost them.

The result showed that United need to be more streetwise in the Champions League. Their players should not be getting red cards in the first half of away matches. But the occasion can get to players, cloud their judgement and lead to rash decisions. In the circumstances, a draw would have been a decent result.

A defeat is a terrible start but that's all it is - a start. There are five games to go in Group F and I expect United to qualify.

Solskjaer not under pressure yet

Seven defeats in 11 Champions League matches under Ole Solskjaer is not good enough for United. I get that but sometimes there is more to football than the statistics show.

Is Solskjaer's job at risk after the defeat in Switzerland? Come on, you can't be serious. United have played four games in the Premier League and won three of them. One defeat in the Champions League does not put Ole's job in jeopardy. I don't see any point in discussing Solskjaer's future so early in the season.

United have a strong squad, have made excellent signings who are bedding in, and we should judge them at the end of the group stage, not after one match.

Lingard can prove his worth to United

Lingard has had a mixed few days. His goal against Newcastle was excellent, a really smart and composed finish. You feel high after a goal like that and come crashing back down to earth when you make a mistake that costs your team, as Lingard did against Young Boys.

Jesse Lingard, Manchester United.jpg

It happens to the best of us and Jesse can bounce back. But the incident showed again why concentration is so important in football. I'm sure he was apologising to his team-mates after the match. Good teams keep things in perspective. There will be plenty more opportunities for Lingard and United to put things right, starting when they go to West Ham, where he did so well on loan, this Sunday.

I expect an immediate response from United and can see them winning a tough game against the Hammers.

Van de Beek looks lost

United midfielder Donny van de Beek is running out of time to save his United career. He started against Young Boys but was substituted at half-time. This has been the story of his time at the club. If he plays, he's brought off. If he comes on, he gets 10 minutes. He never gets the chance to settle and show what he can do.

It's just not working out for Van de Beek. It's a pity because United paid big money for him. But this is what happens when you spend money just to satisfy your fans. I still hope he gets a proper chance but it is going to be very difficult for him and the club may decide to cut their losses, if they can.

Ronaldo delights but Ole faces balancing act

Two games, three goals for Cristiano Ronaldo back in a red shirt. I'm not surprised by the immediate impact he has made at United and he will only get better as the season goes on. You cannot argue with his goalscoring and the aura that he brings to the team. The fans gave him a great welcome back last Saturday and he repaid them with two well-taken goals.

It will be interesting to see how Ole keeps the other players happy. He will have to decide how he uses the likes of Edinson Cavani and Anthony Martial. This is when managing a talented squad becomes difficult because players will feel hard done by.

Ronaldo scored for Man Utd 2021.jpg

Cavani is probably unhappy. He had a great first season at United and how he's dropped down the pecking order and lost his number seven shirt. I hope Ole has had an honest conversation with Cavani about his plans for the team. As a player in this situation, you understand that the manager's job is to pick the best team, but you always want to play and become unhappy when you're left out.

Liverpool, City and Chelsea showed they're Champions League contenders

Manchester City failed to sign a striker in the summer but they still hit six goals in their Champions League win over RB Leipzig. Yes, the Blues conceded three but that doesn't matter when you're smashing them in at the other end. Pep Guardiola's team have the quality to tighten up defensively when they face stronger opposition.

I'm more concerned about Liverpool's defensive lapses. They had a great night, coming from behind to beat AC Milan, but they do look vulnerable on the counter-attack. Like City, though, the Reds have the firepower to compensate and should go deep in the Champions League.

By contrast, Chelsea's win over Zenit St Petersburg showed how disciplined they are under Thomas Tuhchel. When they need to win 1-0 they can do it. Romelu Lukaku is the perfect addition to their Champions League winning squad. He has returned to the Premier League a much better player than he left it. He is in his prime and brimming with confidence.

Kane still looks distracted

Spurs made a great start to the season before losing to opponents you would expect them to beat. How many times have we said that in the past? Nuno Espirito Santo's team were trashed by Crystal Palace last Saturday. It was infuriating because these are the games Spurs must win if they're to make progress this season - 1-0, 2-0, I don't care. Just get the three points.

Harry Kane with ball 1280.jpg

Tottenham have great players but if you aren't consistent you have nothing. Harry Kane didn't have a touch in the opposition box at Selhurst Park, the first time that's happened in his career. He's still brooding about not getting his move to City.

Trust me, I've been in Kane's situation and there are lots of emotions going through his head at the moment. He will be thinking: "What if that transfer had happened and I was playing for City now?" He needs to stay mentally strong because he is one of the best in the world. Once he starts scoring he will put the summer behind him and concentrate on performing for Spurs.

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