Manchester United goalkeeper Andre Onana spoke candidly as he took the blame for his side’s 4-3 defeat to Bayern Munich in their opening Champions League match on Wednesday. The new summer signing let Leroy Sane’s shot from the edge of the box slip through his hands and into the back of his own net, but was quick to apologise for the mistake in a brutally honest post-match interview.
Onana specifically requested to speak with the media after the match, in an attempt to own up for the mistake and showing a mentality that bodes well for the future, even though he was distraught at having made such a high-profile error.
Speaking to TNT Sports, Onana said: “It’s difficult to lose this way. In the beginning we started well and after my mistake, we lost control of the game. It’s a difficult situation for me especially because I’m the one who let the team down.
“The team were good. Because of me, we didn’t win this game. I’m happy with the work of the team, we just have to move on. This is the life of the goalkeeper, if we didn’t win today it’s because of me.
“We were good on the ball, their first shot on target I made a mistake. The team went down because of that mistake. I have to learn from it and be strong. It’s not an easy situation but I’m happy for the comeback of the team, we were strong until the end. I have a lot to prove.
“To be honest, my start in Manchester is not how I want it. Playing how I played today… it’s one of my worst games. It’s difficult because we have big ambitions and this was a big opportunity for us to bounce back. It’s tough. We have to stick together and continue working hard and learn from our mistakes.”
Man Utd boss Erik ten Hag was impressed with his goalkeeper’s decision to speak to the media as opposed to staying out of the limelight after his error on the biggest of stages in football, but felt let down by his team’s defensive performance in Germany.
“It’s good that Onana is taking responsibility,” the Dutch boss said. “But it’s about a team, we bounce back as a team. I’m disappointed because we should stay in the game. If you score three goals at Bayern, you have to take at least a point.
“Every game is huge. We have to make our own luck. Nobody is going to help you. You see the first 25 minutes we were good, but we didn’t score so we have to stay in the game, but look at the first goal, you have to make it harder to get the shot.”