Paul Parker says Ole Gunnar Solskjaer taking off Manchester United defender Axel Tuanzebe at half-time against Istanbul Basaksehir could prove to be a ‘mammoth mistake’.
United slipped to a 2-1 defeat away at the Turkish side in the Champions League on Wednesday night after being found guilty of some calamitous defending in the first half.
Demba Ba had the freedom of the pitch to put the home side ahead after one lofted through ball beat the entire Red Devils backline, before Edin Visca made it 2-0 inside 40 minutes.
Martial pulled one back two minutes prior to the interval, but it wasn’t enough to spark a comeback.
At half-time, Tuanzebe was hooked for McTominay, and Solskjaer explained his decision by citing the fact that the defender was on a yellow card.
After impressing in United’s 2-1 win over Paris Saint-Germain last month, there were plenty of calls for the 22-year-old to keep his place in the side.
However, Tuanzebe was left on the bench for Premier League clashes against Chelsea and Arsenal, and given a brief cameo in the 5-0 victory over Leipzig last week.
And former Red Devils full-back Parker expressed his concerns over how the centre-back will be affected ‘mentally’ by being ‘dragged off’ at half-time against Basaksehir.
‘He had a great game against Paris Saint-Germain, then had no involvement until the next Champions League game.
‘He got another opportunity last night and then got dragged off. I’d be concerned about how that will affect him mentally.
‘He might wonder why he was subbed when he wasn’t at fault for the goal, and be looking at the £80million captain alongside him.’
Parker was replaced by Gary Neville at the right-back spot back in his playing days at Old Trafford.
And the former United defender highlighted his former boss Sir Alex Ferguson’s reluctance to drop an in-form Neville, and suggested Solskjaer should’ve taken the same course of action as his ex-boss regarding Tuanzebe.
‘At the time I thought it was b*******, but he was absolutely right.
‘Taking Tuanzebe off could be a mammoth mistake in the long term.’