Roy Keane took issue with what he saw the Manchester United players doing ahead of the second half of their thrashing at Liverpool on Sunday.
United were just 1-0 down at the break at Anfield but shipped a further six goals as they were completely dismantled by Jurgen Klopp’s side in the second half at Anfield.
Cody Gakpo, Mohamed Salah and Darwin Nunez all grabbed two goals each, before Roberto Firmino came off the bench to wrap up the victory.
United looked comfortable for the first 40 minutes before Gakpo broke the deadlock, and Ten Hag’s men were expected to come out and put Liverpool under pressure in the second period, but instead the floodgates opened.
And Keane said he was irked by the United players “laughing and joking” with the Liverpool staff as they came out for the second half, insisting “this is big boy stuff”.
“I see one or two players come out in the second half having a laugh and a joke,” Keane said on Sky Sports. “They’re 1-0 down at Anfield and they’re having a laugh and a joke with the Anfield staff, the goalkeeping coach. I don’t like to see that rubbish. Do not like to see it.”
“You look at half time, there’s a couple of players having a laugh and a joke, you’re 1-0 down at Anfield, you’re here to work. This is serious business, this is big boy stuff, forget this laughing and joking rubbish. Then you’re talking about the second half and lads are throwing the towel in.”
On their performance in general, Keane added: “United today, when it was three or four you take your medicine. You take your loss, you’re disappointed, but they were just so open. The manager tried to make substitutions and basically just threw the towel in.”
Asked after the game if his players had offered an explanation for their second-half display, Ten Hag said: “No, I didn’t give them the chance until now. I think we have to talk about that.
“I have only given my opinion about it. We will talk about it tomorrow.
“But then I know this team will reset and we have to bounce back. We have shown in the past we can.”
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