Manchester United’s unbeaten start to the season has come to an end as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side were beaten in the Champions League away at Switzerland.
Cristiano Ronaldo opened the scoring with a 13th minute goal in the first half, but a red card to Aaron Wan-Bissaka in the 35th minute changed the context of the game.
Solskjaer had to make changes at half time, as he took off Donny van de Beek for Raphael Varane as he sought to seal a 1-0 victory.
However, Manchester United would go on to lose the game 2-1, as Jesse Lingard’s poor back pass let the team down.
Many have criticised Solskjaer after the defeat, but United legend Rio Ferdinand has backed his former teammate and claims that the defeat was due to individual errors and not tactical errors.
Speaking on BT Sport, the former defender explained: “In the 72nd minute, they’re talking about needing a goal. Ole’s not thinking like that.
“As a manager I understand what he is probably thinking at that time, 1-1, away in Europe, always difficult no matter where you go, in Europe it’s always difficult to go away, on an artificial pitch, we’re down to 10 men, we’ll take a point.
“And that’s what he was thinking. He wasn’t thinking about bringing players on or keeping players on to score goals, it was about seeing the game out. And listen, if he sees that game out, no-one is talking about substitutions.”
When challenged on the fact that Manchester United did not see out the game, Ferdinand claimed it was all personal errors as he argued: “It’s the fact it wasn’t based on the team shape or the team performance, it was based on a single person’s error of judgement. That’s the difference.
“If it was a tactical situation, where you go, ‘That’s the reason they’ve lost today, because tactically they got that wrong’. They didn’t play well today, when they had 11 men or 10 men, but I wouldn’t say the substitutions were the reasons they didn’t get a draw.”