| 15.8°C Dublin

Close

Premium


Lacking desire and intensity - this looks like the end of Pep era at City

Eamonn Sweeney


Only Champions League win can keep Guardiola in a job after meek surrender to the Red Devils

Close

Turning of the tide? Manchester United fitness coach Kieran McKenna celebrates Scott McTominay’s late goal with Fred as United assistant manager Mike Phelan, manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Manchester City counterpart Pep Guardiola look on. Photo: Reuters/Phil Noble

Turning of the tide? Manchester United fitness coach Kieran McKenna celebrates Scott McTominay’s late goal with Fred as United assistant manager Mike Phelan, manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Manchester City counterpart Pep Guardiola look on. Photo: Reuters/Phil Noble

REUTERS

Turning of the tide? Manchester United fitness coach Kieran McKenna celebrates Scott McTominay’s late goal with Fred as United assistant manager Mike Phelan, manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Manchester City counterpart Pep Guardiola look on. Photo: Reuters/Phil Noble

The times they are a changing back in Manchester. For the first time in ages United fans may have more cause for optimism about the future than their City counterparts.

Scott McTominay's spectacular injury-time clincher was a neat microcosm of the game as a whole. Ederson's careless throw was just one example of the colossal carelessness which characterised City's display.

McTominay's first-time finish, on the other hand, encapsulated the confidence and enthusiasm of a team on the way up. Once he might have taken a couple of touches, looked for a teammate or even set off for the corner flag. But the old confidence is returning at Old Trafford. There's no need to get carried away and hail Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as the saviour. Failure to secure a Champions League place would still represent underachievement in a mediocre season. But ten matches unbeaten suggests a top-four spot or Europa League victory is not beyond United.