Rio Ferdinand has explained what is holding Manchester United back following their 1-1 draw with Everton in the Premier League, pointing towards their lack of potency in the final third.
Jose Mourinho‘s men fell behind to a Phil Jagielka goal after 22 minutes and proceeded to strike the woodwork twice, alongside seeing a goal wrongly ruled out for offside, before eventually grabbing an equaliser in injury time through Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
This was Man United’s ninth draw in 12 home games, leaving them four points off fourth placed Manchester City with nine games remaining.
And Ferdinand, speaking on BT Sport after the game, was quick to point towards where Mourinho’s men were going wrong.
“At home you’ve got to put teams away,” he said.
“They were getting balls cross the box but no players to finish it off. They are missing the final details and it’s what is holding the team back.”
United’s malaise in front of goal during the early stages of the season – back when they were mustering 1-1 draws with Stoke City and Arsenal – was, if not understandable, at least acceptable. They were, after all, still finding their feet under Mourinho, and the early signs were certainly there.
Almost half a year later, however, and the problem remains: this is not something that will dissipate over time; this is an affliction that could, if not addressed, invalidate the enormous potential currently at the Portuguese’s disposal. It could be something as simple as a formation change or a new signing that pushes United around the corner, but it feels as if this side still needs to undergo something of a closely monitored psychological transition before fully integrating under this current system.