But he belied the team had attacked United well at times and had their share of territorial advantage but said: “They are a very talented team and at 2-0 down they can hurt on the break with their quality players.
“David Moyes made six changes to the team that beat Olympiakos and brought in six international players – that’s the difference.
“But that first goal was the real killer and then for the second, Mark Noble passed the ball to Rooney inside the box.”
The manager shrugged off the defeat though and is now looking at the next two games against Hull City and Sunderland.
He said: “The defining games are those against the teams around you – not against the likes of Manchester United.
“What concerns me is the number of points we have to games and staying ahead but we are perilously close with 31 from 30.
“We have to get three o at worst one on the board against Hull on Wednesday evening – it’s as simple as that.”