Football

Geoffrey Boycott slams worst Manchester United defence for 50 years

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England cricket legend Geoffrey Boycott has taken a swipe at Manchester United, claiming their shambolic defence is the worst he's seen in 50 years. (Daily Telegraph)

The former Yorkshire batsman singled out Chris Smalling, Jonny Evans and Phil Jones for individual criticism, questioning their contribution to the side after labelling them as overpaid and never fit.

Boycott's controversial comments came in the aftermath of Monday's 2-1 victory over Southampton at St Mary's - a match that the Red Devils were lucky to win, even by Louis van Gaal's own admission.

Manchester United's performance was so poor that Gary Neville likened Van Gaal's side to a pub team, suggesting that watching their catalogue of errors was like standing on the touchline at the 'Dog and Duck'.

Van Gaal hit back at Neville during his post-match interview, but Boycott is clearly in full agreement with the former Old Trafford captain, after questioned the progress being made under the Dutchman's tutelage.

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"Man Utd defenders run around like headless chickens, very disappointing after 13 matches," Boycott said on Twitter.

"I daren't say what I think about Smalling, Jones and Evans because they're always injured. They are overpaid for what they do.

"Fifty years I've supported them and I've never seen a defence so bad."

Manchester United gossip:

Check out all the latest Manchester United news and transfer gossip from today.

Former Manchester United assistant manager Mike Phelan has pinned the blame on Louis van Gaal for the club's injury crisis this season. (BBC Sport)

The 52-year-old, who was a key member of Sir Alex Ferguson's coaching staff for five years, believes the veteran Dutch manager took a serious risk by finding a new role for fitness coach Tony Strudwick - a risk that has since backfired.

Louis van Gaal remains confident that Kevin Strootman will join Manchester United in 2015 - although the Dutch coach may need to wait until the summer if AS Roma advance to the Champions League knockout stages. (Daily Telegraph)

The Holland international's prospective switch to Old Trafford is a formality, it just remains to be seen whether the Red Devils get their man in January.

Nani will not return to Manchester United this season after executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward failed to include a recall clause in the deal that took the winger to Sporting Lisbon during the summer. (Goal.com)

The Red Devils would only be able to bring the Portugal international back to Old Trafford if they paid Sporting compensation in January.

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Topics:
Chris Smalling
Phil Jones
Jonny Evans
Manchester United
Premier League
Football

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