Gary Neville and Roy Keane felt Manchester United ‘threw in the towel’ during their ’embarrasing’ defeat to Manchester City.

Manchester United lost massive ground in their quest for a top-four finish. Ralf Rangnick’s men returned empty-handed from their short trip to the Etihad to take on neighbours Manchester City, as Pep Guardiola’s men proved too good for the Red Devils.

The Premier League leaders thumped Rangnick’s men 4-1 at the Etihad, which kept them six points ahead of nearest rivals Liverpool. As for Manchester United, they slipped a place down to fifth on the table. Meanwhile, Arsenal took over their fourth spot with a win over Watford at Vicarage Road.

Manchester United legends Gary Neville and Roy Keane made their feelings clear and together insisted the players ‘threw the towel in’ as they slammed the club for the ‘shameful’ result. Speaking on the post-match show on Sky Sports, Neville and Keane deliberated about many issues plaguing the club currently, but in unison criticised the performance at the Etihad.

Starting with Neville, he said, “Manchester United’s response to going 3-1 down has been embarrassing. Ninety-two per cent possession for City? They have given up. They are walking around the pitch. It’s nowhere near good enough. There can be no complaints. Man City have been absolutely outstanding. But as a Manchester United fan, it’s embarrassing.”

“City played brilliantly in the second half. But the effort and intensity from United in the last 20 minutes was non-existent. The scoreline isn’t the problem. It’s the response to going 3-1 down that’s the problem. They have thrown the towel in. At the end of the game, Manchester United finished like an absolute shower. They were a disgrace in the last 25 minutes.”

Meanwhile, former Manchester United captain and Sky Sports pundit Roy Keane labelled the team’s response as ‘shameful’ while insisting the players are to be blamed for the way things transpired, although he also conceded the manager will come under the scanner.

“The worst thing that you could say about United is that they gave up,” Keane told Sky Sports before adding, “In any game, if you give up, it’s unforgivable, really. The beauty of top-level sport is that there’s no hiding place. I know United have done well there in the last few years, but we saw all of United’s shortcomings today. Man City were very good in the second half, but there are ways to lose football matches.”

“You’ve got players not putting in performances and players not running back. They stopped running, and they gave up. I don’t understand it. The manager will be criticised about his tactics, but players not running back when you’re playing for Man Utd is really unacceptable. They threw the towel in which is shameful. You need character and personality when you’re up against it and after the third goal, it was game over.”

With Arsenal and Tottenham both having three games in hand over Manchester United, the Red Devils now face an uphill task to finish in the top four.

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