Five Things We Learned About Manchester United Against Feyernoord

1 – United need to play with more speed

This isn’t necessarily about playing with fast players. What we saw in the first half against Manchesyer City last weekend and for the majority of last night’s defeat to Feyenoord was a slow, ponderous Manchester United that created very little. Jose Mourinho looked a little spooked by Saturday’s events, and United sat very deep as a result which left Marcus Rashford very isolated up front. This was hardly a disastrous evening but Mourinho can’t let it become a pattern under his management in the same way Louis van Gaal did.

2 – Rojo shouldn’t start for the club

Marcos Rojo’s wages seemed to be the biggest problem when it came to offloading the Argentine this summer, and having made his first start of the season, there’s nothing to suggest that United are better for his presence. He was poor, often caught out of position and gave the ball away often, which is particularly frustrating given that Cameron Borthwick-Jackson, arguably a superior left back has been sent out on loan.

3 – United need to take the Europa League more seriously

This was an incredibly flat performance for a club that was looking for a response after the derby defeat, and they didn’t get it. United losing their 4th successive European game away from Old Trafford means little; Zorya and Fenerahce will have little fear of facing them if they continue to perform like this. It might not be United’s chief aim this season, but it’s a competition that they need to approach with far more purpose than they showed tonight.

4 – Squad players missed their opportunity to impress

Matteo Darmian, Morgan Schneiderlin and Chris Smalling were making their first start of the season tonight, and bar the Frenchman, they offered little to suggest that they deserve a place in Mourinho’s starting XI against Watford. Memphis Depay also struggled after coming on, which made it a disappointing night for several players with a point to prove to their manager. An opportunity to impress will arrive again next week against Northampton Town, and Mourinho will be hoping to see far more from these players.

5 – This was a disappointing but not disastrous defeat

What Mourinho will have learned from tonight is that he has yet to get the right balance in his side. Paul Pogba is still showing signs of promise, but not brilliance, whilst his young attacking talents have yet to properly click this season. Two defeats in a row isn’t great form, however, and the Portuguese needs to get his side playing with more purpose, and soon.