Belfast Telegraph

City duel is ideal chance to bite back, says Young


Horror show: Ashley Young shows his dejection during the 4-0 loss to Everton
Horror show: Ashley Young shows his dejection during the 4-0 loss to Everton

By Simon Peach

Ashley Young believes tomorrow night's derby gives Manchester United the perfect opportunity to bounce back from their Everton horror show.

United were thrashed 4-0 in an embarrassing capitulation at Goodison Park on Sunday.

They have now lost six of their last eight games in all competitions and this week's visit from in-form title-chasing rivals Manchester City seems the last thing they need.

Left-back Young feels the opposite should be true.

The 33-year-old said: "We have got another tough one coming up, a Manchester derby. I don't think we have to speak about that - we know how important that is. If you can't get yourselves up for a Manchester derby, there is something wrong.

"I think it can be (the best thing), that it is a Manchester derby. I've got confidence in every player that we are going to be ready. We have got to dust ourselves down fairly quickly."

The result at Goodison left United sixth in the Premier League and still with ground to make up in the battle for a top-four place.

The derby is followed by another testing clash against Chelsea before United face Huddersfield and Cardiff in their final two fixtures.

Young said: "It's four games, four winnable games. If you'd looked back in October and (said) we were going to be in this position we would have taken it, but a club like Manchester United should be looking much further up the table.

"We have got four games left, four wins to get. It is not going to be easy, it is going to be tough, but I am sure we can do it."

Lethargic after last week's Champions League exit to Barcelona, United never got going against Everton and did not even muster a shot on target until the 86th minute.

They were stunned by early goals from Richarlison and Gylfi Sigurdsson before further strikes from Lucas Digne and Theo Walcott in the second half piled on the misery.

It was as comprehensive as the scoreline suggested and manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer apologised to fans.

"It's a big disappointment, especially after midweek," said Young. "We wanted to get ourselves back to winning ways and I thought we had a great opportunity to do that.

"Obviously we would have got ourselves further up into the top four but from the first whistle until the end we were beaten all over. It's disappointing."

Meanwhile, Michael Keane hopes Everton get the credit they deserve for their stunning defeat of United.

Most of the headlines following a remarkable game at Goodison have been about United's dismal performance, but Everton were outstanding in all departments and defender Keane, a former United youth player, hopes that is not forgotten.

The centre-back said: "That is the way it is - United are a club that if they are not doing well get all the headlines.

"But we deserve a lot of credit. We went about our game plan exactly as we wanted to and in very tough conditions we took the game to them for 90 minutes. I think we got what we deserved.

"We wanted to get in their faces and make it difficult for them. We knew they would tire.

"I think the two goals in the first half helped open the game up and we managed to get a few more. It was a hot day, it was a matter of keeping the ball and waiting for chances to appear."

Everton moved up to seventh and a potential Europa League qualification spot. Although they lost at relegated Fulham in their previous outing, the Toffees' form has improved markedly with wins over Chelsea, West Ham and Arsenal recently.

Keane (26) said: "We have started to show consistency - albeit with a disappointing result last week, but we bounced back.

"We have only got three games left. We have got to look at each game and try to win them all."

Belfast Telegraph


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