After Bruno Fernandes converted from the penalty spot early on, United went on to concede six goals — two inside the first seven minutes and four in the first half — and had Anthony Martial red carded after a scuffle with Erik Lamela.
The 6-1 result was Tottenham’s second Premier League victory of the season, while defeat leaves United 16th in the league with far more questions than answers at this early stage of the campaign.
In another remarkable scoreline on Sunday, Aston Villa defeated last season’s champion Liverpool 7-2 as Ollie Watkins scored a first-half hat-trick, Jack Grealish scored a brace and John McGinn and new loan signing Ross Barkley bagged one each.
Mo Salah scored two either side of halftime for the Reds, who conceded seven goals for the first time since April 1963, according to Opta; never before has a reigning Premier League champion conceded seven in a game.
‘Nowhere near good enough’
It proved to be a day to dig into English football’s history books at both Old Trafford and Villa Park
Having gained an early advantage, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side conceded four first-half goals in a league game at home for the first time since 1957, Opta stated, when it was Spurs again who netted four.
Tanguy Ndombele, Son Heung-Min, Harry Kane and Serge Aurier were all on the scoresheet for the visiting side as Jose Mourinho got his first victory against his old club as Spurs manager.
It was the third time Manchester United had conceded six in a Premier League game.
“Of course it’s alarming, it’s nowhere near good enough,” Solskjaer told Sky Sports.
“I hold my hand up, it’s my decision to pick the team I did and us as a squad, that’s not good enough for Man United.”
A frantic start to the game saw three goals inside the first seven minutes. Fernandes converted from the penalty spot after Davinson Sanchez brought down Martial in the Spurs box before Ndombele and Son quickly hit back.
Ndombele took advantage of poor United defending to score from close range and Son was on target after a quick free-kick from Kane again exposed the home side at the back.
Things went from bad to worse for United when Martial was sent off for a light slap on Lamela, who fell to the floor dramatically having pushed the Frenchman as the pair waited a cross. Anthony Taylor showed Martial a red card while Lamela went unpunished.
Solskjaer later said it was a “bad reaction” from his forward, but added that if one of his players had gone down in the manner Lamela did he would “hang him up to dry” for going down so softly. Mourinho said he was yet to watch the incident back.
‘Very, very strong performance’
Moments after the red card, Kane got his first as Eric Bailly lost possession trying to play the ball out from the back, exchanging passes with Son — a familiar sight this season — before blasting a shot past David de Gea.
Son got his second and Tottenham’s fourth when he slotted through de Gea’s legs after Aurier had found himself in acres of space on the right wing, and the right back got one himself early in the second half when crisp passing broke down the United defense.
Kane heaped further humiliation on the home side from the penalty spot after Paul Pogba brought down Ben Davies with a badly timed challenge.
For United, the final whistle couldn’t come soon enough.
“We prepared ourselves very well,” Mourinho told Sky Sports of his team’s performance. “Tactically, I think also psychologically, the team was ready. So ready that a penalty on the first minute and (to) be losing immediately, 1-0 after one minute, didn’t affect the team at all.
“I can imagine that some people can say we’re playing against 10 men for a long time, which is obviously true, but for me it’s also true that 11 against 11 we were playing extremely well, we were creating huge problems, we were winning 2-1 and they couldn’t find solutions to control us.
“So I think it was really, really a very, very strong performance.”