Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer expressed frustration about the club's 2-0 defeat at the hands of rival Manchester City at Old Trafford on Saturday.
United registered just one shot on target in the latest edition of the Manchester Derby, which saw Red Devils defender Eric Bailly record an own goal to give City a 1-0 lead in the seventh minute. Bernardo Silva scored shortly before halftime for the Sky Blues.
"It is very disappointing, and it feels like after last week we have made a step or two forward results wise and then a big step backwards," Solskjaer told reporters. "It is a way of losing that we don't like. When you lose a game against a good team you want to see a better Man United team than that."
It marked the third loss in the last four Premier League matches for Manchester United, which also lost 4-2 to Leicester City and 5-0 to Liverpool in the latter stages of October. The only win during that stretch was a 3-0 triumph over Tottenham Hotspur.
United (5-2-4) has dropped to fifth in the table after a promising 4-1-0 start to the term, and Solskjaer is hopeful the recent downtrend in form will end once players return from the two-week international break to face Watford on Nov. 20.
"We have to come out against Watford like a proper hurt animal," he said. "The short answer is [the break] has come at a good time for us. As a group we have had a difficult spell, we have come through it, but this was a big step backwards."
Meanwhile, City (7-2-2) are second in the table and three points behind league-leading Chelsea (8-2-1) after the rivalry win as they look to win their fourth Premier League title in the past five seasons.
"We played the game we needed today. You have to play quick, to move the ball and do the touches every player need but also try to put the ball in the pocket," City manager Pep Guardiola said. "The game was 2-0, and everything was comfortable."
The Sky Blues return to action Nov. 21 when they host Everton at Etihad Stadium.