Manchester United gamers slumped to the turf at full-time in Germany on Tuesday in acknowledgement of what their newest pedestrian first-half show had value them.
The three-2 loss at RB Leipzig means United is not going to be one of many 16 groups within the draw for the knockout phases of the Champions League.
And this isn’t the one value for failure.
The injury will likely be felt within the accounts, within the dealings they’ve with present and doubtlessly future gamers and within the religion the followers have positioned in supervisor Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
With Paul Pogba’s agent angling for a transfer for his consumer and ex-United defender Phil Neville talking of a “witchhunt” in opposition to his former team-mate Solskjaer, BBC Sport appears on the ramifications and response to a giant loss for United.
A decade of Champions League failure
Solskjaer took possession of Tuesday’s loss, one which suggests he’s now the primary supervisor of a British membership to lose six of his first 10 matches within the Champions League.
“We did not carry out as a group properly sufficient. We by no means bought going,” he mentioned. “That’s the supervisor’s duty.”
Nevertheless, the Norwegian’s file is only a continuation of United’s poor type in Europe since Sir Alex Ferguson departed the membership.
Since ending as runners-up in 2010-11 underneath the Scot, who had beforehand received the event twice throughout his reign at Previous Trafford, the Crimson Devils haven’t made it previous the quarter-finals, final reaching that stage in 2018-19.
Their win proportion within the Champions League over the seven seasons since Ferguson left is 45.71%. Within the seven years earlier than that it was 61.33%.
The failure to get out of the group stage on this event is probably simpler to defend than in 2014-15, after they completed third behind Wolfsburg and PSV Eindhoven and 2011-12, when Benfica and Basel beat them to qualification.
Nevertheless it stays a disappointment to a facet that may have hoped to complete above one in every of RB Leipzig or Paris St-Germain, particularly after beating each of their first two Group H video games.
Nevertheless, whereas the Europa League is scant comfort proper now, it does provide United an additional alternative for European success, in a contest they received 4 seasons in the past.
United lose kilos and probably Pogba?
BBC Sport’s Simon Stone:
Amazingly, since reaching the ultimate in 2011, United have received solely two particular person Champions League knockout spherical matches, in 2014 when David Moyes’ facet got here again from a 2-0 first-leg deficit to beat Olympiakos and in 2019, in that tremendous night time in opposition to PSG, when Marcus Rashford’s injury-time penalty overturned a two-goal defeat from the primary leg at Previous Trafford.
However other than the soccer facet – and extra inevitable questions on Solskjaer and his ridiculously inconsistent group – there are additionally the monetary penalties to consider.
Had United reached the quarter-finals of the Champions League, they might have earned themselves a further 21m euros (£19.04m) in prize cash alone. Reaching the identical part of the Europa League will get them 3.1m euros (£2.81m). These sums will truly be larger due to the distribution of the central market pool however that solely serves to widen the hole.
By the scale of their stadium, United are struggling greater than most from the continued absence of followers – at the moment in extra of £100m for the reason that pandemic started – so lacking out on this profitable income stream hurts.
It’ll sharpen minds earlier than subsequent month’s switch window, as Mino Raiola agitates for the cut-price sale of Pogba, Sergio Romero and Marcos Rojo cling round on large salaries with out getting close to to the primary group and Solskjaer appears for reinforcements to strengthen his squad.
‘A witch-hunt to get Ole out of a job’
Six wins from 10 league video games has left United sixth within the Premier League desk, 5 factors behind leaders Tottenham with a recreation in hand. Hardly the file of a failing facet.
They’ve made a behavior, although, of falling behind in video games earlier than rallying to win, together with their previous two league video games – at Southampton and West Ham.
They did the identical on Tuesday, going 2-0 down inside 13 minutes to targets from Angelino and Amadou Haidara, earlier than Justin Kluivert scored a 3rd.
This time they have been unable to recuperate, regardless of the perfect efforts of Bruno Fernandes and Paul Pogba.
It’ll additional gas the dissenting voices to Solskjaer’s place as supervisor, though ex-United defender Phil Neville was fast to defend his former United team-mate.
“I believe there may be an terrible narrative – the minute United lose a recreation it appears a catastrophe. It isn’t a catastrophe, it is a disappointment,” he informed BBC Radio 5 Stay.
“There are United groups prior to now with higher managers than Ole which have gone out at this stage and there are managers within the league which can be under United that do not get the identical stick that Ole will get.
“The narrative contained in the membership is way totally different from outdoors the place there appears to be a complete witch-hunt to get this boy out of a job.”
‘We did not carry out’
United’s supervisor and captain made no excuses for the defeat.
“We spoke about what they might do early within the recreation,” mentioned Solskjaer. “We would have liked to handle it and we did not handle it properly sufficient.
“We did all the things we might usually do in preparation. We all know that everybody needs to be up for a recreation like this. Typically it takes gamers 15-20 minutes to get going however perhaps we aren’t streetwise sufficient.
“Immediately it did not work for us. In fact we have been up for it. The character and energy I am unable to fault.”
United captain Maguire echoed these sentiments.
“We began the sport too gradual,” he informed BT Sport. “It wasn’t adequate – the primary 20 minutes we weren’t at it. They put two balls within the field and we didn’t take care of them.
“We’ve got to have a look at ourselves, we gave ourselves an excessive amount of to do. You have seen how shut we got here on the finish however we began too gradual and we will not preserve falling behind.
“We mentioned on Saturday at half-time, 2-0 down, the following objective is essential and we mentioned it once more tonight. They made it 3-0 and the duty turns into even larger. The third objective proved to be the essential one however even three down we got here shut on the finish.
“I do not wish to take a look at excuses. We’ve got to exit and be aggressive, win balls. That is the fundamentals. If you cannot defend crosses you are going to lose video games. I do not wish to take a look at form – it isn’t an excuse.
“It is a robust group however we felt we should always get via. That is the requirements of this membership. I am gutted for everybody, we labored so onerous to succeed in this competitors. It doesn’t matter what group we bought it could be robust. We’ve got to do extra.”