Patrice Evra believes Manchester United are putting their Premier League title hopes at risk with the kind of performance they produced against Tottenham on Saturday that saw Spurs register their first victory at Old Trafford since December 1989.
Jan Vertonghen and Gareth Bale gave the visitors a deserved half-time lead. Spurs were hit by a fierce second-half fightback. However, amid a flurry of goals, Clint Dempsey scored in between efforts from Nani and Shinji Kagawa. And, after Wayne Rooney and Michael Carrick had struck the frame of Brad Friedel’s goal, Andre Villas-Boas’ side clung on for the final whistle to beat United for the first time in 23 Premier League matches.
Concerned: Tottenham’s William Gallas (right) checks on Man United’s Robin van Persie during Saturday’s EPL tie at Old Trafford. Pic/Getty Images
The result lifted Spurs to fifth in the table — one point behind third-placed United and five adrift of leaders Chelsea, who finished the day three points clear after winning 2-1 at Arsenal in the lunchtime kick-off.
United’s 3-2 defeat was their second of the season. It leaves them four points behind early pacesetters Chelsea and already in that dreaded game of catch-up. United have kept just one clean sheet and conceded nine goals.
And Evra knows it simply is not good enough. “It is too much if we want to win the title,” said the Frenchman.
“The result is what happens when you only play for 45 minutes. The game is 90 minutes long and we deserved to lose because we only played for 45. To concede three goals at Old Trafford is not good enough.
“The problem is in our heads. The first 45 minutes had no speed, no focus, we didn’t win a lot of challenges and we conceded some silly goals.”