Gary Neville has been told by people at Manchester United that the spirit in the dressing room remains positive despite Sunday’s poor defeat at the hands of Brighton and Hove Albion.
Jose Mourinho’s men were first chaotic at the back and then insipid going forward as they suffered a 3-2 defeat at Brighton over the weekend.
The defeat has prompted a furious backlash from supporters and pundits, so much so that the club even had to confirm they were still behind their manager.
And Neville, despite the doom and gloom, has noted that the panic pervading the fanbase has not percolated into the dressing room at all.
“I speak to people at the club and I think that there is a good spirit in the dressing room,” he said.
“[Sunday was] a poor performance. This idea…he’s not lost the players. I don’t think for one minute he’s lost the players so I think it would be wrong to suggest that about this game.
“That will be the wedge that will be tried to be driven and I have felt it being forced a little bit with the Pogba issue this week.
“They’re trying to force this issue. I think he will leave the players because what he needs now is get them right for a week on Monday, a big game against Tottenham, and it is only the second game of the season.
“It’s a worry but it’s only the second game of the season so it’s not terminal.”
Dimitar Berbatov came out with a video following the defeat at Brighton in an attempt to restore some calm among supporters. His message was simple: defeats happen, the season is still very young, stop freaking out, move on, support the club.
That is the dose of reality supporters need right now, yet it does not for one second alleviate concerns. There is a wider feeling that this defeat smells of something rotten, more enduring than just a bad day at the office.
There was nothing to the attacking performance, and the defence fell apart under the first bit of pressure it encountered. No speed, no drive, no purpose. It felt miles away from what other teams are producing, and you can only imagine players are starting to think the same thing.