Ole Gunnar Solskjaer admitted that his Manchester United team is not in the same class as rivals Manchester City and Liverpool, but he does not believe his job is in immediate danger.
United were outscored when City achieved a 2-0 win at Old Trafford on Saturday lunchtime thanks to an own goal by Eric Bailly and a second by Bernardo Silva at the end of the break.
City could have easily emulated Liverpool’s 5-0 win on the same ground a fortnight ago were it not for a series of excellent saves by David de Gea in the first half as United failed to beat their rivals.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer looked dejected when his Manchester United side was outmatched by City
Eric Bailly scored an own goal as City headed for a 2-0 win at Old Trafford.
Bernardo Silva then managed to pass the ball to David de Gea from a tight angle for 2-0
United could finish the weekend as low as 10th in the Premier League table and there will be new scrutiny on Solskjaer’s position as he enters the international fortnight.
When asked on Sky Sports if he had borrowed time, the United boss said: ‘No, I don’t. There is good communication with the club all the time, we are frank and honest about the situation.
“I work for Man United and I want the best for Man United. I want to do what I can to improve this and that is to get back to what we were playing. ”
Solskjaer later added: ‘As long as I’m here, I want to do what I can to improve this.
“When you lose a game against a good team, you want to see a better Man United team than that.
‘We needed to be aggressive. It has come (the internationals) at a good time for us now. We have had a difficult period. ‘
Pressed on whether he is the man to turn the club’s fortunes around, Solskjaer said: ‘Yes, definitely.
Solskjaer has surpassed Pep Guardiola in the past, but this time he did not come close
When asked if the result and performance demonstrated a class gulf between United and the Premier League title contenders, Solskjaer said: ‘Right now we are [a long way off] But we have to go back to how we started to look alike.
“We started to see ourselves as a suitable team towards the end of last season and the beginning of this season. We have to get back to that. ‘
Solskjaer maintained the 3-5-2 system that had worked so well in last Saturday’s 3-0 win at Tottenham, but the result was that City were overwhelmed by City from the first whistle.
Bailly’s shocking own goal, which saw him send a low cross from Joao Cancelo past De Gea as he tried to punt, ruined the game plan in just seven minutes.
City’s second goal saw an even more shocking defense as Luke Shaw and Harry Maguire stared at the ball as Cancelo’s floating pass led Silva into the back post.
Jubilant City fans mocked Solskjaer by singing ‘Ole’s at the wheel’ during the match
“You want to get to them and you want to turn it into a derby game and make some innings,” Solskjaer said.
“When they scored the first goal, it was always going to be tough anyway, but being 1-0 down was tough. David kept us in the game with some God saves and then they scored a goal that they always score.
Cancello cuts in, crosses to the back stick, we know it’s going to happen and it shouldn’t happen.
“They played well, they don’t give you opportunities to win the ball from them. We were not up to our level or standards.
‘We don’t trust ourselves with the whole, we don’t have as much fun as I know they can and we can’t find the angles. Sometimes that’s also the team you’re playing against.
“They lobbied well and made it difficult for us, but sometimes we take the wrong solution or find the right solution but not execute.”
Cristiano Ronaldo was unable to enter the game and cut a frustrated figure at Old Trafford
United are six points behind City after that result and will play Watford on 20 November.
Solskjaer said: “Tottenham last week was good, but it is not what we want to look like,” he added. ‘Unfortunately, we have had to (do that) to try to get results.
“We want to be up front and be more aggressive. For us, it’s about Watford. We have to come like a wounded animal.
Bruno Fernandes asked the team to ask themselves tough questions after a fourth loss of the season in the Premier League that leaves them six points behind City.
“Everyone has to look at themselves,” he said. ‘You have to look in the mirror at what you are doing wrong. You can’t change anyone else’s mindset, you have to look at yourself and understand what you can do better.
“Today showed that we are not at the same level as them. We have to change because this has already happened many, many times. We have to do better. As I am here, I am saying the same thing. We have to talk less and do more.
‘What we did was not enough. They had space and time with the ball, which we shouldn’t do against this type of team and against this type of player ”.
Bruno Fernandes demanded more from his teammates after a fourth league defeat
United had been indebted to goalkeeper David De Gea for a series of good saves before half-time, but a series of defensive mistakes brought City into the half two goals clear.
“They don’t give you the opportunity to beat them the ball,” added the United manager. “We were not at our level and it is necessary to raise the standards.
The whole place went a bit. He’s disappointed with the first goal, but we didn’t play well. We don’t trust ourselves with the ball and we don’t pass as well as I know we can.
‘We have to go back to what we started to look like at the end of last season and at the beginning of this season. We were passive. ‘