Erik ten Hag makes strange excuse after Man Utd dominated in scrappy Brentford draw


Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag suggested that the international break may have been to blame for his side's woeful performance against Brentford on Saturday night, despite seven Bees starters also reporting to their national teams earlier this month.

Although Mason Mount gave United a shock 1-0 lead in the 96th minute, they were extremely fortunate to come away with a point. Kristoffer Ajer equalised moments later and a draw was no less than Brentford deserved after raining down more than 30 shots on Andre Onana's goal.

Curiously enough, Ten Hag cited the recent two-week break as a factor in United's dreary display, telling Sky Sports: "After the international break, the levels are never as high as before."

However, Brentford dispelled that theory by putting on a sparkling performance in front of their home supporters, which manager Thomas Frank described as 'perfect'.

United's squad is jam-packed full of international stars, but stoppage-time scorer Mount was fresh and raring to go after missing out on the latest England squad. By contrast, Ajer joined up with his Norwegian team-mates to face Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

Mark Flekken, Ivan Toney, Nathan Collins, Mathias Jensen, Mads Roerslev and Yegor Yarmolyuk were among the other Bees starters to have spent the international break hard at work with their countrymen, and following that up by putting United to the sword.

"We have to bring it on the pitch. We fought but in the small things, second balls, Brentford were more focused and more aggressive and it should be the other way round. We were winning, we should compliment the team for that, but then we gave it away and that is very disappointing."

A crestfallen Frank, meanwhile, added: "I almost lost faith in the football god but he gave a bit back. We had the most shots we have ever had in a Premier League game. How we didn't win is incredible."

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