Chris Smalling was left disappointed with Manchester United’s 0-0 draw against Newcastle.
The 25-year-old put in another commanding display at centre-back and was extremely unfortunate not to grab the winner late on, when his header from a Memphis Depay corner struck the post.
Smalling chose to look at the positives after the game and felt it was Man United’s best performance so far this season.
Speaking to manutd.com, Smalling was evidently dejected following the result.
“It’s massively disappointing, we’ve come in and it’s like you’ve lost a game, it’s definitely two points dropped.
“In the first 20 minutes, we were terrific. We really pressed them and, even at half-time, I thought if we kept playing like that, we’d get the chances and we did get the chance in the second half but they had so many bodies on the line it just wasn’t our day.”
United will now look forward to their first European trip in over a year when they visit Brugge on Wednesday and Smalling is eagerly anticipating putting things right.
He continued: “We’re looking forward to it, to get back at it. The last two performances have been a big improvement and I think the fact there’s so much riding on that game, we’ll go there and create the chances like today and get a comfortable win.”
After Smalling’s comments, United fans can rest assured that the Reds are looking to bounce back strong against Brugge but the Belgians will now be wary of a backlash from United, who go into the game with a commanding 3-1 lead.
As for the Premier League, United are sitting pretty with seven points from the opening nine but there is a real need to increase the tempo and quality of United’s attack, a problem which by now Van Gaal should be well aware of.