Phil Neville demanded his players “take a long, hard look at themselves” after Inter Miami lost their sixth consecutive match, and admitted he knows the consequences of such a dismal run.
Miami were thrashed 5-0 at home by New England Revolution on Wednesday night, a result that leaves them with the worst record of all 27 MLS sides and bottom of the Eastern Conference.
Their six-game losing run has seen them score just one goal and concede 13, and Neville says he does not need Miami’s owners – including his former England and Manchester United team-mate David Beckham – to tell him the record is not good enough.
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“I feel their full support – I always have done,” Neville said of Miami’s owners. “They don’t need to tell me about their concerns because I have the same concerns.
“I’ve been in football long enough and I know the consequences – that’s no problem to me. We’re doing everything in our power, we just need better performances on the field.
“I’ve got great responsibility and I’m accountable for everything that I do. We’re on a run at the moment that puts me under pressure.”
Despite having Gonzalo Higuain and Blaise Matuidi in their XI, Miami were 4-0 down at half-time to New England, who are top of the Eastern Conference and have the most points in the MLS.
Neville admitted the performance took him by surprise and told his squad to ask themselves if they were doing enough for the team.
He said: “I wasn’t expecting it. The players need to take a long, hard look at themselves, and so do I. We win and we lose together.
“Ultimately it’s my job to make this team better, and in this moment in time they are not. That’s on my shoulders.
“When we suffer a disappointment, we need to make sure that we can recover. That’s what football’s all about – having courage, bravery, not letting your team-mates down on the field.
“We’re not doing that and it’s something we’ve not done for the last six games. It’s something we have to rectify ASAP.
“Did they have better players than us? On paper, no, but they’re a team and that’s what we must become. That’s all I’m asking for – a team that will fight for each other and look round the dressing room and trust each other.
“That’s what I’ve asked them to do – look in the mirror and ask, ‘what are you doing for the team?’ Nothing will deter me from trying to be a success at this football club.”
Miami entered MLS for the 2020 season, with Neville arriving in January ahead of their second campaign following three years in charge of England Women.
But he has won just two league games since taking charge and felt the need to apologise to the club’s supporters following their latest setback.
“It’s the lowest in terms of my feelings after a defeat that I’ve had since I came to this football club – and we’ve had some disappointments,” he said.
“You can lose games in football, but the manner in which we lost tonight was… we’ve said the word unacceptable in the past – it feels worse than that.
“It’s a case of playing for your pride, for the badge, for your supporters – I can only apologise to them for what they saw tonight. It’s them that I feel for, more than myself or the players, because they deserve better.”