Michael Carrick has admitted that Manchester United were nowhere near good enough during their 1-1 draw with Everton on Tuesday night.
Jose Mourinho’s men, desperately in need of a win following their 0-0 draw with West Bromwich Albion, fell behind in the 22nd minute after Phil Jagielka capitalised on a poor mix-up between David de Gea and Marcos Rojo.
The hosts pressed for an equaliser, hitting the woodwork twice and seeing a Zlatan Ibrahimovic goal wrongly ruled out for offside, before eventually grabbing a goal in injury time from the spot.
And Carrick, speaking after the game, was quick to note that Man United were by no means good enough against Ronald Koeman’s side.
“Sometimes you get a late goal here and it gives you a good feeling but not tonight,” he said. “It improved the feeling from where we were but it is by no means enough.
“Credit to the boys, they kept trying, it’s not easy when things are not going well – especially after Saturday.
“When you are in that way of games it can become difficult but you have to keep trying and keep believing and I thought the boys did that, kept trying and kept going.
“It is a point but nowhere near enough.”
This was a game of two halves of misery for United: the first period being hallmarked by Everton outpacing, outthinking, and out-fighting the home side; the second seeing Mourinho’s men mount perhaps their most disjointed attacking onslaught of the season.
Carrick, usually a composed, controlling figure, was inundated by the sheer running power of Idrissa Gueye and Gareth Barry in the first half, before going on to preside over a second period of uncertainty, misplaced long passes and wayward headers from deep.
Perhaps it was fatigue; perhaps it was a hangover from the disaster against West Brom. Either way, Mourinho will know that his side have to improve ahead of their visit to the Stadium of Light.