David de Gea
David de Gea of Manchester United looks on during the Premier League match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Manchester United at Molineux on August 29, 2021 in Wolverhampton, England. Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images


  • David de Gea's missed save allowed West Ham United to beat Manchester United
  • Bruno Fernandes and manager Erik ten Hag defended de Gea from detractors
  • Five matches remain for Manchester United's Premier League season

Manchester United entered their matchup with West Ham United over the weekend hoping to prevent a devastating back-to-back loss in the English Premier League after falling to Brighton & Hove Albion in stoppage time via penalty Friday.

Instead, the Red Devils left London Stadium Sunday with a loss in their pockets. Much of the blame was placed by the fans on the once-unstoppable hands of goalkeeper David de Gea after a sure save slipped past his fingers, allowing West Ham United's Said Benrahma to score the lone goal of the match.

Captain's armband-wearing Bruno Fernandes immediately made it clear that de Gea should not take the brunt of the blame for the 1-0 Premier League loss.

"I have to see it back, but we don't need to focus on that. He (De Gea) has been saving us so many times so doesn't have to take the blame for the result," Fernandes was quoted as saying by BBC Sport journalist Shamoon Hafez.

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag also chimed in with his opinions on the matter, stating that mistakes are simply part of the sport and that "everyone has to take responsibility" in bouncing back even stronger.

A win for Manchester United would have allowed them to leapfrog past Newcastle United in the Premier League standings for third as the Magpies lost to second-place Arsenal, 2-0, Sunday.

One thing going for them early on was that they had multiple looks at the goal and the lead, but attempts from Fernandes, Antony and Marcus Rashford just went wide.

Scrambling back to salvage at least a draw, the Manchester United offense simply looked like a mid-table team as they could not convert any of the few, but clear, opportunities they had in the second half.

It can be argued that Red Devils players were raring to come out with an early lead to put the pressure on West Ham United's offense later on in the match, though de Gea's mistake appeared to have had an effect on the rest of the players.

"Really disappointed. I think we started well in the first half. We played well and we created good opportunities. We hit the post twice and we had many more opportunities, then we had one mistake. It was the turnaround [point] of the game," ten Hag remarked after the match.

This defeat marks their first back-to-back loss in the Premier League since the start of the season in August 2022, and it could not have come at a worse time.

Their Premier League season is about to come to a close with four matches left on the schedule: May 13 against the Wolverhampton Wanderers, May 20 against AFC Bournemouth, May 26 versus Chelsea before closing it out against Fulham on May 28.

Hopes of entering the UEFA Champions League for next season hang in the balance for the storied club, and with some much-needed rest afforded to them before the Wolverhampton Wanderers match this Saturday, May 13, ten Hag will need to rally his wards quickly.

Erik ten Hag, Manchester United
Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Arsenal FC at Old Trafford on September 04, 2022 in Manchester, England. Michael Regan/Getty Images