Manchester United’s wretched season continued after suffering a 1-0 defeat away to Everton who move four points clear of the relegation zone.
If Erik ten Hag, who has emerged as United’s chosen candidate to lead the club, was watching he would have been tempted to switch over to the Dutch version of Homes Under The Hammer after witnessing the offering at Goodison Park.
Ralf Rangnick, who welcomed back Cristiano Ronaldo, saw his side create some good early chances with Marcus Rashford denied twice by good saves from Jordon Pickford.
But the home side showed more energy and effort and took the lead in fortunate circumstances when Anthony Gordon’s strike from outside the box took a massive deflection off Harry Maguire and wrong-footed David De Gea.
United’s scrappy passing, lack of a system and reliance on a piece of Ronaldo magic continued as they offered little after falling behind.
Frank Lampard’s side continued to show more effort in the second period and defended for their lives.
The visitors did not commit enough players into the box despite bringing on Anthony Elanga and Juan Mata and opted for a series of short corners – against a side vulnerable to conceding from set pieces – as they succumbed to another tepid defeat.
The result leaves Rangnick’s side seventh while 17th-placed Everton move four points ahead of Burnley, who play Norwich City on Sunday.
Further evidence that United are a complete shambles.
Against a side that had lost six of their previous seven league games, United put in another stinker of a performance devoid of any togetherness and endeavour to encapsulate their season.
Pogba came on for an injured Fred and offered little, Jadon Sancho’s form continues to plummet, Rashford looks short of confidence in front of goal and Ronaldo had a quiet afternoon as he relies on service.
The club’s season is reaching David Moyes’ 2013/14 campaign/Europa Conference League invitation levels now. They have yet to put in a 90 minute performance since Rangnick’s first game in December and it is a new low today.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Ben Godfrey (Everton): The defender’s confidence would have taken a battering after his mistake in the 3-2 defeat to Burnley in midweek. But he responded brilliantly today with his positioning, concentration levels and winning every tackle.
EVERTON: Pickford 8, Coleman 6, Mykolenko 7, Keane 7, Godfrey 9, Allan 6, Delph 8, Iwobi 7, Gordon 8, Richarlison 7, Calvert-Lewin 5. Subs: Gray n/a, Doucoure n/a.
MAN UTD: De Gea 6, Wan-Bissaka 7, Telles 6, Lindelof 5, Maguire 6, Matic 5, Fred n/a, Fernandes 6, Sancho 3, Rashford 5, Ronaldo 4. Subs: Pogba 4, Elanga, Mata.
12′ – CHANCE! Fernandes’ inswinging cross finds Rashford whose header is well kept out by Pickford. That is two good saves already.
27′ – GOAL FOR EVERTON! Richarlison’s cross is cleared and Gordon’s strike from outside the box takes a massive deflection and goes in.
81′ – GOOD SAVE! Pogba’s low shot from distance is saved by Pickford, who has been excellent today.