The Red Devils started the season with a shock 0-3 defeat to Crystal Palace and were unconvincing in their controversial 3-2 win over Brighton last weekend in the Premier League. However, that was a stark contrast to their form in the Carabao Cup where they won both of their two games where they scored six goals and conceded none.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was hoping to carry forward the performances from the cup games into the league but knew that his predecessor Jose Mourinho would pose a tough challenge with a talented Tottenham side..
Manchester United Starting-XI:
David De Gea; Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Eric Bailly, Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw; Paul Pogba, Nemanja Matic, Bruno Fernandes; Mason Greenwood, Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford.
The Red Devils started the game with a bang, with Martial winning a penalty in the opening minute and Bruno Fernandes giving Manchester United the lead. From there it was all downhill for Manchester United, though.
Tanguy Ndombele scored the equaliser before Son Heung Min gave Tottenham the lead. Martial was then sent off for violent conduct, and Son soon scored his team's third before Harry Kane gave Tottenham a 4-1 lead at the end of the first half.
Solskjaer took off Matic and Bruno Fernandes and brought in Fred and Scott McTominay at the break. But there were little improvements on the pitch as Tottenham used their man advantage very well. Serge Aurier scored to make it 5-1 for the away side, and Harry Kane completed the humiliation for Manchester United from the spot.
The final score was the worst possible nightmare for the Norwegian tactician as Manchester United suffered their worst home defeat in a Premier League game in nine years.
On that note, let us take a look at five Manchester United players who were the poorest on the pitch.
Five Manchester United players who flopped against Tottenham Hotspur
#5 Anthony Martial
Anthony Martial started brilliantly against Spurs, with his movement and quick feet opening up the visitor’s backline as Davinson Sanchez was left with no other option but to bring the Frenchman down.
It looked like the perfect start for Manchester United when Bruno Fernandes converted from the spot.
Even after Tottenham scored twice to go ahead, Martial continued to be a threat for Spurs. However, all that changed in the 28th minute.
While Tottenham were preparing to take a corner, Martial got involved in a row with Eric Lamela in the box. The Argentinean seemed to push the Frenchman, and Martial retaliated with the lightest of slaps on the chin. But Lamela dropped down to the ground holding his face, and the Frenchman was shown a straight red.
Martial was manipulated very easily by Lamela, but his sending off put Manchester United in a numerical disadvantage that dragged them down.
#4 Eric Bailly
The Ivorian caused quite a rage among Manchester United fans with two fantastic performances in back-to-back starts in the Carabao Cup.
Eric Bailly was everything the Red Devils had lacked at the back in the Premier League: he was strong, fast and brave. It was only going to be a matter of time before Solskjaer put him in place of the stuttering Victor Lindelof in the starting eleven, and that moment arrived against Tottenham Hostpur.
Bailly started the game watching his defensive partner struggle, and perhaps a little bit of that nervousness crept into him too. Even though the Ivorian was decent up until Manchester United were reduced to 10 men, he soon fell apart.
He tried to play out from the back when the opposition already had a man advantage but ended up giving the ball away as Spurs capitalised to go 3-1 ahead.
It was a turning point in the game, and that goal perhaps broke the spirit of the Manchester United team. Bailly did not have too much more to contribute in the game as he capped up a forgettable return to the starting-eleven in the Premier League.