Sir Alex Ferguson feels that his Manchester United side are paying the price for failing to kill teams off this season. United's 2-2 draw with West Brom was their fifth draw in eight Premier League matches this term and the second time they had given up a two-goal advantage to drop points.
The worrying thing for Ferguson is that his team's under-par opening to the campaign has not included matches against any notable opposition, other than a struggling Liverpool side. United were ahead twice at Fulham only to draw 2-2 in August, while they led 3-1 late on at Everton in September only to concede two late goals.
Leading through Javier Hernandez's first Premier League goal and Nani's effort, they were pulled back by Patrice Evra's own goal and Somen Tchoyi, capitalising on a dreadful howler by Edwin Van der Sar.
"Where it should have been 5-0 at half-time, we went in at 2-0. There's been many times, Everton away it should have been five or six, it should have been three or four at Fulham in the last 10 minutes of the match and we are losing points," Ferguson said. "It's very frustrating."
"It's not a defining result in terms of where the league is going to end up but we can't keep doing that. We're very frustrated with it."
On being unbeaten in eight matches, with only three wins, Ferguson, who left Wayne Rooney on the bench for 71 minutes against West Brom, said: "There's two ways of looking at that. For teams down the league, you say we're undefeated but for Manchester United, it's not good enough."
For West Brom's second goal at Old Trafford, van der Sar spilled a simple Chris Brunt cross before Tchoyi tapped in. And Ferguson could not believe the error from the veteran Dutch goalkeeper.
He said: "Edwin has been playing for 25 years. Last time he made a mistake like that was probably in primary school so there's nothing you can do about that."
Ryan Giggs returned from a hamstring problem sustained in the 2-2 draw at Bolton in September but suffered a recurrence of the same injury and faces another spell on the sidelines.
Ferguson said: "He's pulled his hamstring again, unfortunately. It's been three weeks and he's done very well in training but we maybe need to give him a longer recovery."
Ferguson, who is currently boycotting print media press conferences and only gives comments to Sky television and Manchester United's official MUTV, made no mention of his decision to leave Rooney on the bench.
The omission is certain to fuel speculation that a rift has emerged between Rooney and Ferguson after the striker last week contradicted comments by the manager that he had been nursing an ankle injury.
Roberto Di Matteo, meanwhile, feels his side are starting to change the way they are perceived in the Premier League after a start to the season which has veered between the extremes of a 6-0 drubbing by Chelsea and a 3-2 away victory over Arsenal.
"We've played eight games and there are 30 games left. My aim, and I'm being boring here, is to get rid of the reputation of this football club being a yo-yo club," he said. "Game by game that's my target and my ambition.
"I keep telling them that we shouldn't make a habit of coming back from behind. We showed team spirit and the personality that we have in the team and we never give up. That's my philosophy."
"I want my players to fight. We always go onto the pitch to try to win the games, we're a positive team, we try to create chances and win games. You look at the records of the teams and we score a lot of goals."