Marco van Basten Says Manchester United's Players Are 'Spoilt Boys'

Rob Blanchette@@_Rob_BFeatured ColumnistOctober 5, 2019

DEN HAAG, NETHERLANDS - OCTOBER 3: coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer of Manchester United  during the UEFA Europa League   match between AZ Alkmaar v Manchester United at the Cars Jeans Stadium on October 3, 2019 in Den Haag Netherlands (Photo by Ed van de Pol/Soccrates/Getty Images)
Soccrates Images/Getty Images

Dutch legend Marco van Basten criticised Manchester United following their goalless draw at AZ Alkmaar in the UEFA Europa League.

Van Basten described the United players as "spoilt boys" following complaints about the artificial surface used for Thursday's game.

According to Simon Mullock of the Mirror, the former AC Milan striker—who is now a technical director for FIFA—criticised the Red Devils for rotating their team for the clash and for the quality of their football:

"What have United done so far? They beat Astana 1-0! They are 10th in the English Premier League and they are playing a kind of ­football which you really don't want to write home about. ...

"If I was at AZ Alkmaar, their ­opponent, I'd have been very annoyed – and I would have been incredibly ­motivated to show how annoyed I was.

"These United players are very well-paid ­professionals. So are they saying they should not be playing on an artificial pitch? Please, get lost. Stop talking about these spoilt boys.

"These are players who are paid an awful lot of money and ­supposed to be so ­professional.

"They shouldn't be moaning about an ­artificial pitch. If you allow them to moan, you are just ­creating a load of whingers."

Peter Dejong/Associated Press

AZ had been forced to move the game to Den Haag because of the collapse of a stand, and United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was critical of the surface before the match.

Solskjaer fielded a youthful side, giving Angel Gomes, Brandon Williams and Mason Greenwood starts in a weakened team. United failed to register a shot on target but managed to frustrate the high-flying Eredivisie outfit.

The Europa League offers United a route back into the UEFA Champions League, but with an injury crisis still affecting the squad, Solskjaer has been forced to consider his options.

Peter Dejong/Associated Press

United have just two wins from their first seven Premier League outings, and the focus will be on climbing the table and fighting for the top four instead of cup success.

The Red Devils travel to Newcastle United in the Premier League on Sunday, and with the pressure building, Solskjaer needs both a good performance and a convincing result.

Steve Bruce's team are 19th, and a loss to the Magpies could threaten Solskjaer's future at Old Trafford.

However, United's defence has improved this season, providing some relief for supporters, but the club's misfiring attack must start to provide the goals needed to progress.