United lacked the 'imagination' and 'creativity' says Rio Ferdinand

‘Toothless’ Manchester United lacked the ‘imagination and creativity’ to beat Villarreal in the Europa League final, says Rio Ferdinand…. who insists they just ‘weren’t good enough’

  • Manchester United lost the Europa League final to Villarreal on Wednesday  
  • Rio Ferdinand says Manchester United were lacking ‘imagination and creativity’
  • He said they failed to take the game by the scruff of the neck after Cavani scored
  • Ferdinand also believes United relied too much on individuals during the game

Rio Ferdinand says Manchester United were lacking ‘imagination and creativity’ against Villarreal on Wednesday night. 

The Red Devils failed to end their four year wait for a trophy after losing the Europa League final in a dramatic shootout that came down to David De Gea’s crucial penalty.

Speaking about the match as a whole, Ferdinand said United failed to take ‘the game by the scruff of the neck’ after Edinson Cavani scored and said they relied too much on ‘individuals’.  

Manchester United lost the Europa League final to Villarreal on Wednesday night

Speaking after United’s defeat, Ferdinand said: ‘Listen, Man United have relied on individuals to come up with the trump card. 

‘Bruno has been the man they leaned on, Cavani later in the season. Today they didn’t come up with the goods.

‘The imagination wasn’t there, their creativity wasn’t there. 

They lost the Europa League final in a dramatic penalty shootout that came down to De Gea

Rio Ferdinand says United were lacking ‘imagination and creativity’ during the game

‘They had little moment after Cavani scored, you thought they had momentum. They didn’t take the game by the scruff of the neck.

‘They were toothless at times. The experience of Emery, the way he set the team up, they nullified them, they got the job done and credit to them.

‘Tonight was the test and they failed.’ 

‘They can’t get over the line. Semi-finals last season, now they’ve got tot a final but they can’t get over the line to win silverware. 

‘You’re not afforded time usually. They’re in a position now where they need to turn finals into silverware.’

Neil Lennon has also said their performance was ‘ineffective and lacked creativity and flair’

Ferdinand went on to say: ‘If you look as a whole they’ve improved on last season, this was an opportunity to form part of a winning culture, it was the acid test tonight and the team failed. 

‘Ole tried to create environment to make a unit for these situations, they didn’t get a job done. To be brutal, it is a failure.’

Former Celtic manager Neil Lennon shared the same thoughts as Ferdinand, having told BBC 5 Live: ‘I didn’t see enough of the Manchester United way tonight and I haven’t seen enough of it in the last three or four years. 

‘Back in the end when you went to watch them you wanted to watch the Harlem Globetrotters and you wanted to be entertained.

‘There was zero entertainment tonight – it was functional, ineffective and lacked a lot of creativity and flair.’ 

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