Robbie Savage brands Manchester United defenders 'pathetic' in newspaper article

Manchester United 3

Manchester United's defensive woes have been well-documented this season as one of the problems holding them back to returning to the heights of when they won the title two years ago.

BBC and BT Sport pundit Robbie Savage has criticised the Manchester United defence for their role in the club's season so far in a piece for the Daily Mirror [13/01/2015].

The United defence has been criticised a lot this season while their goalkeeper David De Gea has been hailed as one of the best goalkeepers on the planet for bailing them out time and time again.

Former Premier League midfielder Savage said: "United's back three are pathetic. Too many gaps between them. They can't defend, they can't defend!

"They keep making errors. Phil Jones has been there long enough to grab that centre-half position by the scruff of the neck, so has Chris Smalling. So why haven't they?"

Savage added that as a result the side are a long way away from challenging for the Premier League title and for the Champions League when they eventually re-enter the competition. 

However, he says if that area of the squad is addressed, then it could be different.

He added: "If they buy two quality defenders then, yes, I can see them possibly winning the Premier League next year."

United have one of the more illustrious looking strike forces in European football but they lacked the firepower to overcome Southampton on Sunday, not even registering a shot on target in the 1-0 defeat at Old Trafford. Radamel Falcao's omission from the matchday squad raised a few eyebrows - though United finding chances few and far between is testament to some great defending from the Saints.

It must be said that United have lost a great deal of experience at the back with the departures of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic on free transfers in the summer, whilst injuries have not allowed Louis van Gaal to select a settled back line, combined with a lack of games to build an understanding with a back three the Dutchman has tried to implement ever since his arrival at Old Trafford.

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