Cristiano Ronaldo issued a rallying call to his Manchester United side and their supporters in the wake of their dismal 5-0 defeat to Liverpool on Sunday.
The Red Devils could have reduced the deficit between themselves and the Reds to a point in the Premier League with victory at Old Trafford but were instead calamitous in defence, gifting the visitors two straightforward goals inside the opening 15 minutes.
Naby Keita and Diogo Jota’s goals were added to by Mohamed Salah, who scored twice before half time to give Liverpool a 4-0 lead at the break – leading to an exodus of home supporters before the second half. The Egyptian completed his hat trick five minutes into the second half before United substitute Paul Pogba got himself sent off for a terrible challenge on Keita.
In summary, it went just as badly as it could have for United and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who is now under massive pressure to salvage a season that has barely even got going.
Ronaldo, who actually had a goal disallowed and was also fortunate not to get sent off for an embarrassing kick out at Curtis Jones, posted on social media late on Sunday evening, thanking the United fans for their support.
“Sometimes the result is not the one we fight for. Sometimes the score is not the one we want. And this is on us, only on us, because there’s no one else to blame,” he posted on Instagram.
“Our fans were, once again, amazing in their constant support. They deserve better than this, much better, and it’s up to us to deliver. The time is now!”
Ronaldo’s kick at Jones sparked a mini brawl between the two teams, with Liverpool defenders Virgil van Dijk, Andy Robertson and Ibrahima Konate each giving the Portugal international an earful.