Rio Ferdinand has severely criticised Manchester United for their poor showing against Brentford in the Premier League on Saturday, jokingly suggesting that they might as well appoint Sam Allardyce if they continue to employ long-ball tactics. Erik ten Hag's miserable start to life with the Red Devils continued as his side slipped to a second successive Premier League defeat, with Brentford romping to a 4-0 victory in west London.
Ferdinand was appalled by the display and says its clear that the squad is playing with "zero confidence".
Why did Ferdinand say Man Utd should appoint Allardyce?
The former United defender was shocked to see his old club constantly trying to bypass the midfield, an approach that he believes would be better suited to a team managed by former Everton, Newcastle and Blackburn boss Allardyce.
"My phone was popping off, the WhatsApp groups, online, everything. We are just the butt of all jokes now. We have become an absolute laughing stock," Ferdinand said on his YouTube channel FIVE.
“You watch the game [against Brentford] and you look at it and you think, ‘Wow’. The players are nowhere near worth the money that they spent on them. They’re nowhere near worth what they’re probably paying them. There’s zero confidence in the building.
“You see after the first goal where [David] De Gea plays out, the next time he saw numbers on the backs of shirts – they ran up the pitch and just wanted it kicked long.
“Like, we might as well bring in some other managers like Big Sam or Pulis if we’re going to be like that [kicking it long]."
He added: “You look at it and you say, ‘This is not the Manchester United that I once knew’. Even if it’s a little bit of a fall from grace, [to fall] this far? It’s beyond digging out individual players even. And we’ve got Liverpool coming up next.”
Man Utd couldn't cope with Brentford's 'Usain Bolts'
The former England international also pointed out that the Red Devils simply could not match the pace of a fired-up Brentford outfit.
"We weren’t at the races. You saw the way Brentford set up, they came out looking like sprinters waiting to pounce when we were playing out from the back," said Ferdinand.
"They were sitting there like Usain Bolts, all on your marks, ready, set, go.
“They were saying, ‘We dare you to play’. They were at it. There are no surprises in this league, you know what you’re going to get. Ten Hag is new to this league so he’s going to get a couple of surprises here and there, but the players have been here.
“He’s not had the fortune to bring in five or six new players, so all the players there have got no excuses. You know you’re going to Brentford and it’s going to be a tough game and if you don’t roll your sleeves up from the minute one you’re going to get turned over. We were absolutely battered.”
United's next clash agaist Liverpool is due to take place at Old Trafford on August 22, five days before they take in a trip to Southampton.