MAN UTD 1, TOTTENHAM 6
The statistics were damning as Manchester United were hit for six by Tottenham on a happy homecoming to Old Trafford for Jose Mourinho.
If United thought the home defeat inflicted by Crystal Palace was bad, it was nothing compared with this debacle.
It was the first time in the Premier League era – in 1,079 matches – and the first time since 1957 they have conceded four first-half goals, and then it was against Spurs.
It was only the second time since 1930 they have conceded six goals at home, the other occasion was against neighbours City in 2011.
And it was only the third time in a Premier League game they have conceded six.
Yet the afternoon could have begun better for United who took a second minute lead through a Bruno Fernandes penalty.
But that was as good as it got as United conceded six and also had Anthony Martial sent off as it was the first time since 1986 when Ron Atkinson was manager they have lost their first two home games of the season.
Spurs, meanwhile, made it 13 goals in the last two games as they extended their unbeaten run to seven games in all competitions.Embed from Getty Images
And Mourinho has lost only three of his 23 managerial meetings with United, though none will have been as sweet as this one.
United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer described the pain of the defeat.
He said: “It was very embarrassing and hurt me. It was my worst day as a manager and as manager I am responsible.
“I have lost big results before and bounced back. I will do everything I can to turn it around.
“All the goals were down to mistakes and it was like Christmas. If you make too many mistakes against a good team, you get punished.”
Solskjaer was disappointed by Erik Lamela’s reaction which led to Martial’s dismissal.
He explained: “I have two emotions, well done to Anthony for not going down.
“You can’t go down like that after staying on your feet five seconds.
“If it were my son, he would be living on bread and water for three weeks.”
Mourinho said: “The pleasure was not the 6-1 win but the performance and three points.
“To beat Manchester United 6-1 at Old Trafford was an honour for us all.
“To be losing after a few seconds, you don’t come back unless you are brave and confident. It was an incredible reaction.
“The second half was 10 v 11, but I focus on 11 v 11 when we were so good.”
Eric Bailly was the only player to keep his place following the Reds’ victory at Brighton in midweek in the Carabao Cup.
Harry Kane, Davinson Sanchez and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg were the only survivors from the Spurs side that beat Maccabi Haifa three days earlier in the Europa League.
They handed a first Premier League start to left-back Sergio Reguillon, their recent £28million capture from Real Madrid.
What a crazy and error strewn start to the game which produced three goals inside the first seven minutes.
Spurs were caught cold conceding a penalty after 28 seconds when Anthony Martial was bundled over by Sanchez.
Bruno Fernandes scored from the spot and United were ahead after 1min 37sec.
The joy was short-lived, however, as Spurs were level in the fourth minute after a blunder by Harry Maguire.
The centre back’s header back to David De Gea failed to reach the keeper, Luke Shaw was unable to clear and Tanguy Ndombele fired home from six yards.
And it got worse for the Reds when Maguire was again at fault for the second goal.
Maguire committed a clumsy challenge barging into the back of Kane who quickly picked himself up and released Heung-Min Son who raced clear to slot a low shot past De Gea.
Incredibly it was Kane’s sixth assist of the season for the player who is usually a scorer rather than being a provider.
United were within inches of making it 2-2 when Fernandes’ slide-rule pass released Marcus Rashford whose shot struck the upright with keeper Hugo Lloris rooted to the spot.
Son was put through on goal only to overrun the ball as he looked set to score.
The afternoon was rapidly unravelling for the Reds as Martial was sent off just short of the half hour for slapping Erik Lamela in the face after the pair jostled at a corner, a harsh decision, though he had to go by the letter of the law.
And moments later it was 3-1 following further sloppy defending as United were caught playing the ball out of defence.
Bailly’s pass put Nemanja Matic in trouble as he was dispossessed. Son squared a ball for Kane to side foot home a low shot from 12 yards.
The afternoon got even worse when Spurs added a fourth goal in the 37th minute as Serge Aurier set up Son who scored from the tightest angles with a shot through the legs of De Gea.
Solskjaer made two changes for the restart as Fernandes and Matic made way for Fred and Scott McTominay.
The changes failed to make any impression as Spurs made it 5-1 in the 50th minute.
Aurier ran on to Reguillon’s through ball and fired low past De Gea as Spurs piled on the misery for the Reds.
United made their third change mid-half as Mason Greenwood made way for Donny van de Beek.
It would have been six but for a good save by De Gea low to his left to deny Kane.
It was merely delaying the inevitable as Spurs made it 6-1 when Paul Pogba fouled substitute Ben Davies and Kane scored from the spot.
The England striker has scored eight goals and provided seven assists in his last eight games.