Disaster! Ferguson hits out at United flops but refuses to blame De Gea for Blackburn loss
Sir Alex Ferguson has branded Manchester United”s stunning 3-2 home defeat to Blackburn this afternoon as “a disaster”.
United fell two behind to a couple of Yakubu efforts either side of the interval but quickly replied through Dimitar Berbatov, whose brace took his tally to five in two games.
However, as the pressure for a winner intensified, Blackburn broke and when David de Gea failed to collect a Morten Gamst Pedersen corner 10 minutes from time, Grant Hanley nodded the winner from close range.
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“It is a disaster,” said Ferguson, whose side failed in their quest to mark his 70th birthday by claiming top spot in the Barclays Premier League. “I never expected it. We lost two terrible goals and you can”t do that.”
After successive clean sheets from Anders Lindegaard, questions will now be asked over De Gea, who appeared to have recovered from his early season worries to reaffirm his status as United”s No 1.
The Spain Under 21 star”s culpability for Blackburn”s winner seemed obvious, although Ferguson refused to apportion blame.
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“We all could have done better,” he said, when asked about De Gea. “It was a bad goal to lose.”
Ferguson”s annoyance was rammed home in even more forceful fashion by former Blackburn defender Phil Jones, who was facing his former club in a fixture he lost 7-1 with Rovers last term.
“I am gutted,” he said. “The manager”s birthday as well. We weren”t at the races. Too slow, too laboured. Not quick enough. The injuries don”t help. But they are no excuse. We were nowhere near good enough.”
In fact, Jones felt United had not done themselves any favours by getting back on level terms so quickly.
“That was our downfall, coming back too soon,” he said. “I think we thought we had won it. We got two back, we thought we had won it and we eased off.
“They punished us. They thoroughly deserved their win. We weren”t at the races today. It will be a bad New Year”s Eve.
“I feel worse today than when we got smashed 7-1 last season playing for Blackburn. That puts into perspective how disappointed I am.”
For Blackburn boss Steve Kean it represented a stunning change in fortunes less than two weeks after it appeared certain he would be sacked after a terrible home defeat to Bolton.
“To come to a place like this and get a result is up there with our best wins,” he said. “As soon as it went to 2-1, we were thinking it was going to be tough. And at 2-2, it would have been a good point.”