‘I have no idea…’ – Neville slams Ten Hag for having 5ft 10in Eriksen mark giant Haaland in Man Utd’s derby thumping
GARY NEVILLE criticised Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag after Christian Eriksen was spotted marking Erling Haaland at a corner during Manchester City’s 6-3 win on Sunday.
After Phil Foden had given the hosts an early lead at the Etihad, the Red Devils were tasked with defending a corner 11 minutes before half-time.
And they were a depleted unit at the back as centre-back Raphael Varane was receiving treatment when the set-piece was taken.
The Frenchman would have been marking City striker Haaland, so it was left up to the rest of the United players to work out who would pick him up for the corner.
For some reason, the diminutive Eriksen – who stands at just 5ft 10in – was selected as the man to try and stop the gigantic 6ft 5in Haaland.
Unsurprisingly, it did not work.
Haaland shrugged Eriksen off with ease before leaping above Scott McTominay and Diogo Dalot to power a header beyond David de Gea.
Tyrell Malacia did his best to try and hook the ball away on the goal line, but it had already gone over by the time he diverted it clear.
And Neville was left baffled by United’s decision to have Eriksen mark Haaland.
Speaking on Sky Sports’ commentary, he said: “I’ve no idea why Eriksen is marking him in that initial phase and the rest of them are stood still when he’s on the move.
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“Eriksen can’t handle him physically. He gets up so early, he’s so strong and the technique is brilliant.”
Haaland would go on to score again three minutes later, before completing his hat-trick in the second half.
It takes the Norwegian’s tally to 17 goals in just 11 games since arriving in England.
And he has already netted three Premier League hat-tricks in just eight matches.
Meanwhile, the Manchester derby result ends United’s run of four straight league wins.
Next up for Ten Hag’s men is a trip to Omonia in the Europa League on Thursday, before they take on Everton at Goodison Park on Sunday.
Pep Guardiola’s side host Copenhagen in the Champions League on Wednesday and then take on Southampton at the Etihad three days later.